The Seattle Thunderbirds ran their winning streak to eight games on Tuesday night, beating the Royals, 8-0, in Victoria. That victory followed on the heels of a 7-0 triumph in Victoria on Monday afternoon.
After Monday’s game, Cleve Dheensaw of the Victoria Times Colonist wrote:
“Too fast, too big, too good. Basically, too everything.
“The Seattle Thunderbirds are all that with 10 NHL draft picks, including five first-rounders, and another five players ranked for this year’s NHL draft. “The Thunderbirds are on another planet than most Western Hockey League teams, and in another solar system entirely, than also-rans like the Victoria Royals.”
If the WHL playoffs started today:
Winnipeg (1) vs. Medicine Hat (8)
Red Deer (2) vs. Calgary (7)
Saskatoon (3) vs. Regina (6)
Moose Jaw (4) vs. Lethbridge (5)
Seattle (1) vs. Kelowna (8)
Kamloops (2) vs. Vancouver (7)
Portland (3) vs. Prince George (6)
Tri-City (4) vs. Everett (5)
TUESDAY’S WHL HIGHLIGHTS:
The Moose Jaw Warriors struck for the game’s first five goals en route to an 8-4 victory over the Lethbridge Hurricanes. . . . F Eric Alarie (17) got it started 17 seconds into the first period and the Warriors, who had lost three in a row, went on from there. . . . The Warriors got a goal and three assists from each of F Ryder Korczak (22) and Jagger Firkus (29), with F Atley Calvert scoring twice (33) and adding one assist. F Martin Rysavy helped out with a goal (7) and two assists. . . . F Blake Swetlikoff scored twice (13) and added an assist for Lethbridge. . . . Chances are this was a playoff preview because Moose Jaw (34-19-3) and Lethbridge (30-20-6) are comfortably settled into fourth and fifth in the Eastern Conference, each with 12 games remaining. . . .
In Prince George, the Cougars completed a doubleheader sweep by beating the Portland Winterhawks, 3-1. . . . The Cougars had won, 1-0 in a shootout, on Monday. . . . The home boys got second-period goals from F Jaxsen Wiebe (13), at 4:32, and F Carlin Dezainde (4), at 14:09. . . . F Cole Dubinsky (16) made it 3-0 at 12:39 of the third. . . . F Luca Cagnoni (14) got Portland on the board at 16:54 of the third. . . . The Cougars got 34 saves from G Tyler Brennan, while G Dante Giannuzzi stopped 29 shots at the other end. . . . These two teams could well meet up in the first round of the playoffs. . . . Prince George (26-23-4) is sixth in the Western Conference, two points behind the Everett Silvertips. . . . Portland (36-14-5) is third in the conference, but is 0-4-1 in its last five games. . . .
The Seattle Thunderbirds completed a three-game sweep of a series with the Victoria Royals, winning 8-0 on Vancouver Island. . . . The Thunderbirds had won, 7-0, in Victoria on Monday and 8-1 in Kent, Wash., on Saturday. . . . Last night, Seattle took a 3-0 lead in the first period, getting the first one from F Brad Lambert at 8:02 and later scores from D Nolan Allan (9) and F Mekai Sanders (4) just six seconds apart. . . . F Nico Myatovic, who turned 18 on Dec. 1, enjoyed this one with his first career three-goal game. Last season, he had four goals in 67 games. This season, he has 23 in 54 outings. . . . Allan also added three assists. . . . Lambert finished with two goals. He’s got 11 goals and 10 assists in 13 games. . . . F Reid Schaefer had a goal (20) and two assists. . . . G Scott Ratzlaff blocked 21 shots to post his fifth shutout of the season. He is 20-6-1, 2.07, .922. . . . Seattle lost F Kyle Crnkovic to a headshot major and game misconduct at 9:21 of the first period. . . . Seattle’s victory allowed the idle Tri-City Americans to clinch a playoff spot. They are fourth in the Western Conference, two points ahead of the Everett Silvertips. . . . Seattle (43-9-2) has won eight in a row. It leads the Western Conference by 10 points over the Kamloops Blazers and is 11 points ahead of Portland atop the U.S. Division. . . . Victoria (15-36-6) has lost four in a row. It is seven points from a playoff spot with 11 games remaining.
F Gavin McKenna, the No. 1 overall selection in the 2021 WHL draft by the Medicine Hat Tigers, had four points on Tuesday as Yukon beat host P.E.I., 5-3, at the Canada Winter Games. McKenna has put up 21 points in three games. . . . McKenna, who plays at the South Alberta Hockey Academy, turned 15 on Dec. 20. From Whitehorse, he has played in 11 games with the Tigers, earning eight assists. . . .
G Rhett Stoesser of the Red Deer Rebels will miss the remainder of this season. The Rebels announced on Tuesday that he suffered an undisclosed injury “last week in practice that will require season-ending surgery.” . . . Stoesser, 17, is from Cremona, Alta. A freshman, he went 19-6-0, 2.35, .910 and put up two shutouts. . . . The Rebels have added G Chase Wutzke, 17, from the U18AAA Saskatoon Contacts to their roster for the remainder of the season. He was a second-round selection in the WHL’s 2021 draft. . . . Wutzke will team with G Kyle Kelsey, who turned 19 on Jan. 22 and is is 17-8-4, 2.68, .908 as a freshman. . . .
Former NHL and OHL star Bobby Smith has sold his 85 per cent share in the QMJHL’s Halifax Mooseheads to Sam Simon, a Detroit-based businessman. Smith was the majority owner for 20 years. . . . “I wasn’t going to own the team forever,” Smith explained, “and none of my kids who have their own lives . . . was interested so when a good buyer presented himself and he saw the Mooseheads as the team he wanted to buy and this guy was going to be a real asset to the team, there was a deal to be made. We put one together and here we are.” . . . Willy Palov has the complete story right here.
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Living Kidney Donor Program
St. Paul’s Hospital
6A Providence Building
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Vancouver General Hospital Living Donor Program – Kidney
Gordon and Leslie Diamond Health Care Centre
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