Royals “definitely in” on 2020 Memorial Cup . . . Bajkov fills hat as Everett wins Game 3 . . . Bo knows it’s Game 7 in SJHL

Scattershooting

If there was doubt in your mind about the Victoria Royals and the 2020 Memorial Cup, you can forget it. They’re in.

“We’re 100 per cent, definitely in,” Cam Hope, the Royals’ president and general VictoriaRoyalsmanager, told Cleve Dheensaw of the Victoria Times Colonist late last week.

The Kamloops Blazers and Kelowna Rockets also are all-in on this one, with both having held news conferences to announce their intentions. The Royals haven’t gone that far yet, but they will.

“We have let the Western Hockey League know we are bidding,” Hope told Dheensaw, adding that there isn’t any rush to hold a news conference because the WHL’s deadline to file an expression of interest is June 1 and bids won’t be heard until Oct. 3.

“The deadline for the expression of interest is not until later in the summer,” Hope said. “We have been (working) quietly behind the scenes. There will be a time to be louder.”

Dheensaw’s complete story is right here.


In Kennewick, Wash., the Everett Silvertips broke open a 4-4 game with four third-period goals in the span of 4:50 and went on to an 8-4 victory over the Tri-City Americans before Everettan announced crowd of 3,268 in Game 3 of the WHL’s best-of-seven Western Conference final. . . . Everett leads the series, 2-1. . . . The visitors got three goals from F Patrick Bajkov, who snapped the 4-4 tie at 6:54 of the third period, then made it 6-4 at 9:21. . . . The Americans had tied the score 4-4 on third-period goals from F Isaac Johnson, at 0:47, and F Michael Rasmussen, at 1:45. . . . Tri-City scored its first two goals via the PP and now is 17-33 with the man advantage through 11 playoff games. . . . Things got a bit heated early in the third period with the head coaches — Everett’s Dennis Williams and Tri-City’s Mike Williamson — exchanging greetings at the benches. . . . The series won’t resume until Thursday because Kennewick’s Toyota Center is playing host to Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story Onstage on Wednesday night. . . .

Meanwhile, the Eastern Conference final is set to continue tonight (Tuesday) in Lethbridge with the Swift Current Broncos holding a 2-0 edge over the Hurricanes. . . . The Broncos lost D Artyom Minulin and F Glenn Gawdin to injuries in the first two games. It’s playoffs, so their status for Game 3 isn’t known.


G Bo Didur stopped 36 shots on Sunday leading, leading the host Estevan Bruins to a 4-0 victory over the Nipawin Hawks in Game 6 of the SJHL’s championship final for the SJHLCanalta Cup. The best-of-seven series is 3-3 and will be decided Tuesday night in Nipawin. Game time is 7:30 p.m. . . . That, considering all that has transpired over the past two-plus weeks, is the only way this could end, isn’t it? . . . F Jake Fletcher, the Bruins’ captain, had a goal, his 10th of the playoffs, and two assists. Fletcher has 20 points, one behind playoff co-leaders Kaelan Holt of Estevan, who is the son of former Swift Current Broncos star Todd Holt, and Nipawin’s Brandan Arnold. Kaelan Holt had two assists on Sunday. . . . Rob Vanstone of the Regina Leader-Post was in Estevan and did up this piece right here on Didur, who is into the final games of his junior hockey career. . . . The winner of Tuesday’s game will meet the MJHL-champion Steinbach Pistons for the ANAVET Cup and a berth in the Royal Bank Cup.


The other day, a woman changed her mind about singing the U.S. national anthem at a Reno Aces’ baseball game when she was told she couldn’t bring her gun along with her. As Jim Barach of WCHS-TV in Charleston, W.Va., noted: “Apparently they got her name off the wrong list of sopranos.”


The MJHL’s Dauphin Kings have signed Doug Hedley as their general manager and head coach. Hedley, a former Kings head coach, spent the past two seasons with the MJHL’s OCN Blizzard. . . . Hedley has been behind the Kings’ bench for 358 games, going 217-116-17-8. According to a Kings’ news release, he is “second behind Marlin Murray (556) in all-time regular-season games coached and second in wins as a Kings coach.”. . . . With Dauphin, Hedley takes over from Mitch Giguere, an assistant coach who had been working as the interim GM/head coach after Marc Berry was fired on Nov. 19. . . . This season, the Kings finished 14-44-1-1, good for 10th in the 11-team league.



Dwight Perry, in the Seattle Times: “The Metropolitan King County Council approved a ban on vaping and chewing tobacco in sports facilities — particularly the Mariners’ Safeco Field — effective May 19. In other words, Skoal’s out for the summer.”


MacBeth

F Tyler Spurgeon (Kelowna, 2001-06) has signed a one-year extension with Innsbruck (Austria, Erste Bank Liga). The team captain, he had 18 goals and 31 assists in 54 games this season. . . .

F Jordan Hickmott (Medicine Hat, Prince Albert, Edmonton, 2005-11) has signed a one-year contract with the Linz Black Wings (Austria, Erste Bank Liga). This season, with Villach (Austria, Erste Bank Liga), he had 20 goals and 22 assists in 51 games. He led his club in goals and points. . . .

F Justin Feser (Tri-City, 2008-13) has signed a one-year contract with the Fischtown Pinguins Bremerhaven (Germany, DEL). This season, with the Krefeld Pinguine (Germany, DEL), he had 14 goals and 12 assists in 44 games. . . .

F T.J. Mulock (Vancouver, Regina, Kamloops, 2002-03, 2005-06) has signed a one-year contract with the Straubing Tigers (Germany, DEL). This season, with Cologne Haie (Germany, DEL), he had two goals and seven assists in 46 games. He is a dual German-Canadian citizen.

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Scattershooting: Kelowna favoured as 2020 MC host? . . . Broncos, Silvertips take early leads . . . Wild takes BCHL title to U.S.

Scattershooting

Bruce Hamilton, the president and general manager of the Kelowna Rockets, announced Thursday that his organization, in conjunction with the city, Tourism Kelowna and KelownaRocketsProspera Place, officially is in the bidding to play host to the 2020 Memorial Cup.

The Rockets last played host to the four-team tournament in 2004, when they won it all. That season, the Rockets, under head coach Marc Habscheid, lost a seven-game Western Conference final to the Kevin Constantine-coached Everett Silvertips, who were in their first WHL season. The Silvertips then were swept from the championship final by the Medicine Hat Tigers.

What makes the Rockets’ decision to enter the 2020 fray so interesting is that it means officials from three of the five B.C. Division teams say they are preparing bids for the 2020 tournament.

Kamloops1The Kamloops Blazers announced on Nov. 9 that they will be in the chase, while the Victoria Royals also are expected to bid.

In November, I asked Cam Hope, the Royals’ president and general manager, if his organization is interested in playing host to the 2020 Memorial Cup and he gave me a one-word answer: “Absolutely.”

Around the same time, Hope told the Victoria Times Colonist that “we intend to bid for the 2020 Memorial Cup.”

Victoria and Vancouver will be the host cities for the 2019 World Junior Championship, VictoriaRoyalsand Hope sees a link between a successful WJC and the 2020 Memorial Cup. You can bet that ticket sales from the WJC will be a big part of Victoria’s bid presentation.

Any one of the other 19 WHL teams has until June 1 to make an expression of interest. Those who are still interested will make their bid presentations at a board of governors’ meeting in Calgary on Oct. 3. Following the presentations, the governors will vote and a host team/city will be revealed at the conclusion of the meeting.

At this early date, I would suggest that the Rockets are the favourites, for at least three reasons. Firstly, the 2004 tournament was a fabulous show and really raised the bar for future Memorial Cups. Second, the Rockets, with super scout Lorne Frey on staff, have a history of icing competitive teams. Third, Hamilton, who also is the chairman of the WHL’s board of governors, carries a lot of weight at the executive level.

The Royals could upset the applecart, though, because as nice as Kelowna is in May, who wouldn’t want to spend a couple of weeks in Victoria at that time of year? They also have a recent history of being competitive, and Hope showed in January that he isn’t afraid to roll the dice at the trade deadline. It didn’t work this time, with the injury bug perhaps playing a role, but he definitely showed a willingness to pull the trigger.

Kamloops is the underdog in this three-horse race, having missed the playoffs in two of the past four seasons, and having lost out in the first round in the other two. The Blazers are rebuilding, witness their January deal with Everett in which Kamloops dealt two veterans — F Garrett Pilon and D Ondrej Vala — for two roster players in F Orrin Centazzo and D Montana Onyebuchi, two 2002-born prospects and two 2019 bantam draft picks.

By Oct. 3, however, the 2018-19 season won’t be nearly far enough along to give the voting governors a handle on the bidding teams’ expected level of competitiveness for 2019-20. That means it will be up to each team to convince the governors with a thorough scouting report.

In the end, of course, it may come down to money, meaning the team that guarantees the largest profit — and we’re talking a few million Canadian dollars here — may win the bid.

That being the case, Tom Gaglardi, the Blazers’ majority owner, could use some of his family money to guarantee the profit, a move that just might give Kamloops an edge.

The 2018 Memorial Cup is to be held in Regina, with the 2019 tournament in Halifax.


BTW, the Blazers revealed their 2018-19 season-ticket prices this week, with premium tickets going for $657, adult for $582, senior for $478, and youth/student for $403. The premium price is up $16 from last season, with the other three each having gone up by $15. . . . The WHL, of course, is reducing its regular-season schedule from 72 to 68 games, meaning that increase is for two fewer home games than in 2017-18.


The WHL has 22 teams. What might be the over-under for the number of teams to increase season-ticket prices?


The WHL’s conference finals began on Friday night, with the host Swift Current Broncos whlskating to a 3-2 victory over the Lethbridge Hurricanes, and the Everett Silvertips getting past the visiting Tri-City Americans, also 3-2. . . . Game 2 in each series will be played in the same venue tonight. . . . When this season began, who had those four teams in the conference finals? . . . In Swift Current, G Stuart Skinner stopped 38 shots and F Aleksi Heponiemi broke a 2-2 tie at 11:11 of the third period. In 29 career playoff games, he has one goal and 27 assists. . . . Artyom Minulin didn’t finish the game for the Broncos, but head coach Manny Viveiros told Shawn Mullin, the team’s radio voice, that the third-year Russian defenceman has “a touch of the flu.” . . . In Everett, G Carter Hart stopped 24 shots and F Garrett Pilon scored twice for the Silvertips. . . . F Morgan Geekie had one of the Americans’ goals, meaning he has at least one goal in each of the club’s nine playoff games this season. Tri-City went into the game with an 8-0 record in these playoffs. . . . Everett now has won five straight games.


Please note that final is singular, so it is the Western Conference final and the other series is the Eastern Conference final. The next round will be the WHL final. OK?


The SJHL final continued Friday night, with the Nipawin Hawks beating the visiting Estevan Bruins, 3-1, to take a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven final for the Canalta Cup. They’ll play Game 6 in Estevan on Sunday. . . . The Bruins got the game’s first goal, from F Michael McChesney at 2:24 of the first period, but weren’t able to get another one past G Declan Hobbs. D Josh McDougall pulled the Hawks even at 10:17, and F Chad McCartney got what proved to be the winner at 1:33 of the second period. D Gage Misskey also scored for Nipawin, at 19:55 of the second. . . .

In the MJHL, the Steinbach Pistons hold a 3-2 lead over the Virden Oil Capitals, who are scheduled to play host to Game 6 tonight. The Oil Capitals won the first two games in the series, only to have the Pistons roar back with three straight victories, including 4-0 in Virden on Monday and 7-1 in Steinbach on Thursday. . . . The MJHL and SJHL winners will meet for the ANAVET Cup, with a berth in the Royal Bank Cup on the line. That tournament opens in Chilliwack, B.C., on May 12. . . .

In the BCHL, the Wenatchee, Wash., Wild wrapped up its first championship on Thursday, beating the visiting Prince George Spruce Kings, 3-0, to win the Fred Page Cup in front of 3,845 fans in the Toyota Town Center. The Wild is in its third season in the BCHL. Wenatchee is the first American team to win the BCHL title since the Bellingham Blazers in 1979. . . . The Wild next will face the AJHL-champion Spruce Grove Saints, starting in Wenatchee with games on Friday, April 27, and Saturday, April 28. The winner of that series will advance to the Royal Bank Cup in Chilliwack. . . . The Saints won the AJHL title on Friday, beating the host Okotoks Oilers, 3-2, to take the Inter Pipeline Cup final, 4-1.

If you’re wondering how Wenatchee and Spruce Grove will handle the travel, here’s an excerpt from an AJHL news release:

“If one team sweeps the first two games (in Wenatchee), the remainder of the series will be played in Spruce Grove. If the teams split the opening two games, Game 3 will be played in Wenatchee before the series switches to Spruce Grove for the remainder of the series.”


Assistant coach Ian Herbers’ three-year contract with the Edmonton Oilers is soon to Saskatoonexpire. He took a three-year sabbatical from the U of Alberta Golden Bears — he had been their head coach — to sign with the Oilers. Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal reports right here that Herbers, should his deal with the Oilers not be renewed, could be headed back to the Golden Bears. . . . Matheson also reports that Serge Lajoie, who replaced Herbers at the U of A, “has interviewed for the vacant (head-coaching) job with the WHL’s Saskatoon Blades, which sounds like he’s being proactive (in case) Herbers moves back to the Bears.” . . . The Blades are looking for a head coach after firing Dean Brockman at the end of the regular season.


USA Hockey announced Friday that David Quinn will be head coach of its junior team that will play in the 2019 World Junior Championship in Vancouver and Victoria, Dec. 26 through Jan. 5. . . . Quinn just completed his fourth season as the head coach of the Boston University Terriers. . . . Quinn’s assistant coaches with Team USA will be Mike Hastings of Minnesota State-Mankato, David Lassonde of Dartmouth and Steve Miller of Ohio State.


The Delta Hockey Academy has added a pair of former WHLers to its coaching staff. Milan Dragicevic takes over the Bantam Prep White team, while Rick Lanz will coach the U15 team. . . . Dragicevic played with the Regina Pats, New Westminster Bruins, Tri-City Americans, Spokane Chiefs and Victoria Cougars (1986-90), and later spent four seasons as an assistant coach with the Americans and two (2000-02) as the Vancouver Giants’ head coach. He also spent 12 seasons as the head coach of the UBC Thunderbirds. . . . Lanz was on the Americans’ coaching staff for one season (1997-98).


If you’re young and thinking about a career as a play-by-play man, the BCHL’s Salmon Arm Silverbacks may have a spot for you. They are looking for someone to handle play-by-play and to manage their social media accounts. . . . There’s more right here.


You see it before NHL games — a player seated on a bench cracks open a small packet, waves it under his nose and grimaces, and you know he’s ready. But what is that all about, and is it performance-enhancing? . . . The incomparable Roy MacGregor of The Globe and Mail checks it out in an entertaining read that is right here.

Kelowna forward gets NHL deal . . . Halbgewachs moves into scoring lead . . . Kehler, Winterhawks blank Silvertips

A LITTLE OF THIS . . .

F Carsen Twarynski of the Kelowna Rockets has signed a three-year entry-level contract KelownaRocketswith the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers. Twarynski, 20, was a third-round selection by the Flyers in the NHL’s 2016 draft. . . . From St. Alberta, Alta., he has 43 goals, 17 of them via the PP, and 27 assists in ?? games this season. His previous career highs were 20 goals and 45 points. . . . Twarynski has appeared in the Flyers’ past two development camps, and has played in one game in each of the past two preseasons. . . . The 6-foot-2, 200-pounder wasn’t selected in the WHL bantam draft. He has played in 255 regular-season WHL games, the first 161 with the Calgary Hitmen. He has 86 goals and 94 assists in those 255 games. . . . With the Rockets, he has 50 goals and 42 assists in 94 games.


The Kootenay Ice has added three players to its roster — F Eli Lieffers, who will turn 18 Kootenaynewon March 26; F Blake Allan, 16; and D Jordan Chudley, 16. . . . Lieffers was a fourth-round pick in the WHL’s 2015 bantam draft. He had five goals and seven assists in 15 games with the midget AAA Saskatoon Contacts this season. . . . Allan was a third-round pick in the 2016 bantam draft. This season, he had 10 goals and 23 assists in 42 games with the midget AAA Saskatoon Blazers. . . . Chudley was a fourth-round pick in the 2016 bantam draft. From Souris, Man., he played for the midget AAA Southwest Cougars, putting up two goals and nine assists in 42 games. . . . All three played in Sunday’s 4-3 OT loss to the Oil Kings in Edmonton. Allan, in fact, scored his first WHL goal.


IF THE PLAYOFFS OPENED TODAY …

EASTERN CONFERENCE

Prince Albert at Moose Jaw

Brandon at Medicine Hat

Regina at Swift Current

Red Deer at Lethbridge

——

WESTERN CONFERENCE

Seattle at Everett

Tri-City at Kelowna

Spokane at Portland

Vancouver at Victoria


Scoreboard

SUNDAY:

At Moose Jaw, F Jayden Halbgewachs had a goal and two assists to take over the WHL scoring lead as the Warriors dumped the Brandon Wheat Kings, 5-3. . . . Moose Jaw (51-MooseJawWarriors15-3) has won two straight and now leads the overall standings by five points over Swift Current. Each team has three games remaining. . . . Brandon (37-27-5) had won its previous three games. It holds down the Eastern Conference’s first wild-card spot, four points ahead of Prince Albert. . . . With two games left in the season series, Moose Jaw is 5-1-0; Brandon is 1-5-0. . . . Both teams played three games in fewer than 48 hours, with each going 2-1-0. . . . The Warriors took a 2-0 first-period lead on two goals from F Vince Loschiavo (19), at 14:24 and 16:47. . . . Brandon tied it on goals F Gunnar Wegleitner (10), at 10:39 of the second period, and F Rylan Bettens (7), at 5:56 of the third. . . . Halbgewachs broke the tie with his WHL-leading 68th goal, at 6:12, only to have Brandon F Caiden Daley (6) tie it at 13:09. . . . F Ryan Peckford (20) gave Moose Jaw a 4-3 lead at 15:07, and F Tanner Jeannot (37) got the empty-netter at 19:07. . . . Halbgewachs assisted on each of the last two goals. He now has 125 points, one more than F Glenn Gawdin of Swift Current. . . . Moose Jaw got two assists from F Brett Howden and one from Jeannot. . . . The Warriors were 0-1 on the PP; the Wheat Kings were 0-2. . . . G Brody Willms earned the victory with 18 saves, two fewer than Brandon’s Dylan Myskiw. . . . F Brayden Burke was among Moose Jaw’s scratches for a fourth game in a row. The Warriors also were without D Brandon Schuldhaus and D Dmitri Zaitsev, both of whom were injured during a 4-2 victory over visiting Swift Current on Saturday. . . . With the two defencemen out, the Warriors brought in D Matt Sanders from the midget AAA Calgary Buffaloes. . . . Also missing from Moose Jaw’s lineup was F Barrett Sheen, who has been given a TBD misconduct after he took a charging major and game misconduct for a hit on Swift Current F Tyler Steenbergen on Saturday. . . . The Wheat Kings scratched G Logan Thompson. . . . Announced attendance: 3,326.


At Victoria, the Royals erased a 3-2 deficit with two third-period goals to beat the Prince George Cougars, 4-3. . . . Victoria (39-25-6) has won two in row, having beat the visiting VictoriaRoyalsCougars, 4-3 in OT, on Friday night. Yes, the Cougars had a day off on Saturday in Victoria. . . . The Royals are second in the B.C. Division, three points behind Kelowna. Victoria has two games remaining. . . . Prince George (23-37-9) has lost five in a row (0-4-1). . . . Victoria went 5-2-1 in the season series; Prince George was 3-3-2. . . . F Aaron Boyd (13) gave the Cougars a 1-0 lead just 15 seconds into Sunday’s game. . . . The Royals took a 2-1 lead on goals from F Tarun Fizer (2), at 2:36, and F Matthew Phillips, on a PP, at 13:53. . . . The Cougars tied it at 17:14 on D Joel Lakusta’s ninth goal. . . . The visitors went ahead 3-2 at 19:02 of the second period when F Jackson Leppard (15) counted on a PP. . . . Victoria F Igor Martynov (18) tied it at 8:09, and Phillips (47) got the winner, on a PP, at 13:08. . . . The Royals got two assists from F Tyler Soy, who set a franchise record for games played (321), one more than D Ryan Gagnon (2012-17). . . . F Jared Bethune and F Brogan O’Brien each had two assists for the Cougars. . . . Victoria was 2-2 on the PP; Prince George was 1-3. . . . The Royals got 33 saves from G Griffen Outhouse, who won his franchise-record 35th game of the season. That broke the record he set last season. . . . G Tavin Grant stopped 30 shots for the Cougars. . . . Victoria has scored 284 goals this season, breaking the franchise record of 281 (2015-16). . . . Announced attendance: 5,815.


At Edmonton, D Wyatt McLeod scored in OT to give the Oil Kings a 4-3 victory over the Kootenay Ice. . . . Edmonton (20-41-8) had lost its previous four games. . . . Kootenay (25-EdmontonOilKings38-6) has lost 10 in a row (0-7-3). . . . Edmonton won the season series, 4-1-1; Kootenay was 2-3-1. . . . The Oil Kings got the game’s first goal when D Conner McDonald (9) scored at 8:42 of the first period. . . . F Blake Allan (1) tied it at 12:40, and D Martin Bodak (7) gave the Ice the lead at 4:31 of the second period. . . . The Oil Kings went ahead 3-2 as F Trey Fix-Wolansky (30) and F Brett Kemp (16), on a PP, scored at 11:43 and 19:03. . . . The visitors forced OT as F Cameron Hausinger (19) tied the score at 19:33 of the third period. . . . McLeod won it with his second goal of the season. . . . Edmonton was 1-1 on the PP; Kootenay was 0-4. . . . The Oil Kings got 36 saves from G Josh Dechaine. . . . G Duncan McGovern stopped 25 shots for Kootenay. . . . Announced attendance: 10,533.


At Portland, G Cole Kehler recorded the shutout as the Winterhawks skated to a 2-0 victory over the Everett Silvertips. . . . Portland (43-21-5) is second in the Western PortlandConference standings, four points behind Everett (44-19-5), which had won its previous three games. . . . Each team has three games remaining. . . . Portland went 5-4-1 in the season series; Everett was 5-5-0. . . . Everett was playing for the third time in fewer than 48 hours. It went 2-1-0. . . . Kehler turned aside 28 shots in posting his fourth shutout this season and the sixth of this career. This season, he is 29-15-5, 2.72, .910. . . . The Winterhawks moved out front, 1-0, when D Brendan De Jong (5) scored at 10:06 of the first period. . . . The home side made it 2-0 at 13:54 of the third period on D Henri Jokiharju’s 10th goal, on a PP. . . . F Cody Glass had two assists for Portland. . . . The Winterhawks were 1-3 on the PP; the Silvertips were 0-5. . . . G Carter Hart stopped 29 shots for Everett. This season, he is 29-5-4, 1.55, .950. Three of his regulation-time losses have been to Portland. . . . Everett was without D Ondrej Vala, who drew a TBD suspension after he was tossed from a Saturday game with a cross-checking major and game misconduct following a hit on Seattle F Zack Andrusiak. . . . Portland scratched F Alex Overhardt (ill) and then lost F Lukus MacKenzie to what appeared to be an arm or wrist injury in the first period. . . . Announced attendance: 8,263.


At Kennewick, Wash., the Tri-City Americans broke a 2-2 tie with two second-period goals 23 seconds apart and went on to a 4-3 victory over the Vancouver Giants. . . . Tri-City (36-TriCity3024-9) has won two in a row. It looks destined to finish in the Western Conference’s first wild-card spot. . . . Vancouver (34-25-9) is third in the B.C. Division, five points behind Victoria with three games to play. . . . Tri-City won three of four games between the teams this season. . . . D Jake Bean (10) gave the Americans a 1-0 lead at 14:27 of the first period. . . . F Ty Ronning pulled Vancouver even at 16:40. . . . Ronning had been ejected from a Saturday game with a clipping major and game misconduct, but the WHL obviously chose not to issue a suspension. . . . The Americans went ahead 2-1 on F Morgan Geekie’s 28th goal, at 17:31. . . . Ronning scored again — he’s got 59 — at 0:32 of the second period, this one on a PP. . . . The Americans moved into a 4-2 lead on two quick goals from F Michael Rasmussen (28) and F Riley Sawchuk (14), at 17:41 and 18:04. . . . F James Malm (19) got Vancouver’s third goal, at 18:16 of the third period. . . . D Anthony Bishop had two assists for Tri-City. . . . The Giants got two assists from F Davis Koch and one from Ronning. . . . Vancouver was 1-4 on the PP; Tri-City was 0-4. . . . Tri-City G Patrick Dea stopped 37 shots, one more than Vancouver’s David Tendeck. . . . Both teams were playing their third game in fewer than 48 hours. The Giants lost 6-2 to the host Americans on Friday, then moved on to Spokane where they beat the Chiefs, 6-5 in shootout, on Saturday. Then it was on the bus and back to Kennewick for this one. . . . The Americans won 6-2 in Portland on Saturday, so had a 3-0-0). . . . Dan O’Connor, the radio voice of the Giants, called his 500th WHL game. He is in his first season after having worked with the Prince George Cougars. . . . Announced attendance: 3,030.


MONDAY (all times local):

No Games Scheduled.


TUESDAY (all times local):

Prince Albert at Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.

Saskatoon at Brandon 7 p.m.

Lethbridge at Edmonton, 7 p.m.

Calgary at Medicine Hat, 7 p.m.

Everett vs. Tri-City, at Kennewick, Wash., 7:05 p.m.


TWEET OF THE DAY

Giants sign import draft pick . . . Everett forward gets NHL deal . . . Seattle in, Kamloops out of playoff picture

A LITTLE OF THIS . . .

The Vancouver Giants have signed F Yannik Valenti, who is from Bad Tolz, Germany, to a VancouverWHL contact. The 5-foot-10, 175-pound Valenti, who won’t turn 18 until Sept. 24, was selected by the Giants in the 2017 CHL import draft. Vancouver played with one import all season, rather than the maximum of two, and thus was able to maintain Valenti’s WHL rights. . . . This season, Valenti played for Jungadler Mannheim’s U-19 team, putting up 34 goals and 18 assists in 36 games. Last season, he had 20 goals and 23 assists in 40 games with that team. This season, he also played four games with Adler Mannheim in the DEL and two with the EC Kassel Huskies of DEL-2.


F Patrick Bajkov of the Everett Silvertips has signed a three-year entry-level contract with the NHL’s Florida Panthers. Bajkov, 20, is from Nanaimo, B.C. He was a sixth-round selection by Everett in the WHL’s 2012 bantam draft, but never was drafted by an NHL team. . . . He went into this weekend with 30 goals and 61 assists in 67 games. . . . In 337 regular-season games, he has 109 goals and 170 assists with the Silvertips. He is the franchise’s career leader in goals and points, and is second in assists and games played.


Nolan Graham, an assistant coach at RPI, is in intensive care in an Albany, N.Y., hospital after being struck by a vehicle on Tuesday. . . . The 38-year-old is believed to have suffered a fractured skull and brain injuries. . . . Graham, from Nanaimo, B.C., played two seasons (1997-99) with the BCHL’s Chilliwack Chiefs, before going on to spend four seasons at RPI. After a brief pro career, he turned to coaching and was in the BCHL for four seasons — three as an assistant coach with the Nanaimo Clippers and one (2009-10) as GM/head coach of the Alberni Valley Bulldogs. . . . There is more on Graham, including the link to a GoFundMe page, right here.


IF THE PLAYOFFS OPENED TODAY …

EASTERN CONFERENCE

Prince Albert at Moose Jaw

Brandon at Medicine Hat

Regina at Swift Current

Red Deer at Lethbridge

——

WESTERN CONFERENCE

Seattle at Everett

Tri-City at Kelowna

Spokane at Portland

Vancouver at Victoria


Scoreboard

FRIDAY:

At Prince Albert, the Raiders ran their winning streak to eight games by dumping the Moose Jaw Warriors, 6-4. . . . Prince Albert (31-25-11) is in possession of the Eastern PrinceAlbertConference’s second wild-card spot, four points behind Brandon and five ahead of Saskatoon. . . . Moose Jaw (49-15-3) had won its previous two games. It leads the overall standings, by one point over Swift Current. . . . The Warriors lead the season series, 4-2-1; the Raiders are 3-4-0. . . . F Cole Fonstad (21) gave the Raiders a 1-0 lead at 11:37 of the first period, and F Kody McDonald made it 2-0 at 4:17 of the second. . . . F Brendan Klatt (3) got the Warriors on the scoreboard at 8:13. . . . McDonald’s 34th goal, at 10:28, restored the Raiders’ two-goal lead, and F Jordy Stallard (42) stretched it to three, on a PP, at 13:29. . . . F Jayden Halbgewachs got the Warriors to within two at 15:55, but the home team got that one back at 18:15 as F Curtis Miske scored. . . . Miske made it 6-2 with his 25th goal, while shorthanded, at 1:48 of the third period. . . . The Warriors closed to within two as F Justin Almeida got his 40th at 6:41, and Halbgewachs (66) counted, on a PP, at 13:23. . . . Fonstad also had two assists for the Raiders. Last season, as a freshman, Fonstad had 11 goals and 15 assists in 26 games. This season, he has 72 points, including 51 assists, in 67 games. . . . F Parker Kelly also had two assists for the winners, and Stallard added one. . . . Halbgewachs and Almeida each had an assist for Moose Jaw. . . . Halbgewachs now has 135 regular-season goals with the Warriors, moving past F Brayden Point into second on the franchise’s career list. F Theo Fleury is No. 1, at 201. . . . Prince Albert was 1-2 on the PP; Moose Jaw was 1-3. . . . G Ian Scott earned the victory with 21 saves, four more than Moose Jaw’s Adam Evanoff. . . . Prince Albert F Regan Nagy was unsuccessful on a third-period penalty shot. . . . The Warriors were without F Brayden Burke for a second straight game, while the Raiders scratched F Brett Leason, who didn’t finish a 4-2 victory over visiting Edmonton on Wednesday. . . . . Announced attendance: 2,324.


At Brandon, F Evan Weinger scored three times to lead the Wheat Kings to a 6-3 victory over the Swift Current Broncos. . . . Brandon (36-26-5) has won two in a row. It is fourth BrandonWKregularin the East Division, three points behind Regina. The Wheat Kings hold down the Eastern Conference’s first wild-card spot. . . . Swift Current (47-15-6) had points in each of its previous five games (4-0-1). It is second in the overall standings, one point behind Moose Jaw. . . . The Broncos won the season series with Brandon, 4-2-2; the Wheat Kings were (4-4-0). . . . The Broncos went up 2-0 on first-period goals from F Kaden Elder (15), at 2:47, and F Beck Malnestyn (15), shorthanded, at 8:48. . . . Brandon tied it in the second period when F Cole Reinhardt (17) and Weinger scored, at 12:29 and 13:36. . . . F Tyler Steenbergen’s 46th goal and 100th point gave the visitors a 3-2 edge at 17:06. . . . Weinger tied it at 19:00. . . . F Ty Lewis (42) shot Brandon into a 4-3 lead, on a PP, at 12:09 of the third period. . . . F Linden McCorrister (17) provided insurance at 12:35, and Weinger completed the hat trick — he’s got 29 goals — into an empty net at 18:00. . . . D Braden Schneider andF Stelio Mattheos had two assists each for Brandon, with Lewis getting one. . . . The Broncos now have three 100-point men — F Glenn Gawdin and F Aleksi Heponiemi are the others. The last team to have three such players was the Portland Winterhawks in 2012-13 — F Brendan Leipsic and F Nic Petan, each 120, andF Ty Rattie, 110. . . . Swift Current was 1-2 on the PP; Brandon was 1-5. . . . G Logan Thompson started for Brandon and stopped 21 of 24 shots. He left with an apparent leg injury after the second period. Dylan Myskiw came on to stop all five shots he faced in the third period. . . . The Broncos got 27 stops from G Stuart Skinner. . . . Gawdin (ill), the WHL scoring leader, was among Swift Current’s scratches. . . . Announced attendance: 4,240.


At Saskatoon, F Tristen Nielsen scored his third goal of the game in OT to give the Calgary Hitmen a 5-4 victory over the Blades. . . . Calgary (21-36-10) finished 2-2-0 in the season Calgaryseries. . . . Saskatoon (32-31-4) is five points from a playoff spot with five games remaining. . . . The Blades went 2-1-1 in the season series. . . . F Gage Ramsay (6) gave the home side a 1-0 lead at 1:48 of the first period. . . . Nielsen, who has 18 goals, tied it at 2:38. . . . The Blades went ahead 3-1 on goals from F Josh Paterson (30), who was playing in his 200th game, at 11:39, and D Mark Rubinchik (3), at 13:57. . . . Calgary tied it on two shorthanded goals on the same Sasktoon power-play, with F Mark Kastelic (18) scoring at 15:26, and Nielsen at 16:37. . . . F Braylon Shmyr (36) gave the Blades a 4-3 lead 41 seconds into the third period. . . . Calgary tied it at 8:35 on a goal from F Carson Focht (12). . . . Nielsen, who also had an assist, won it at 1:58 of overtime as he completed his first career WHL hat trick. . . . Calgary got three assists from D Egor Zamula and two from Focht. . . . F Chase Wouters and F Max Gerlach each had two helpers for the Blades, with Patterson, Shmyr and Ramsay adding one apiece. . . . Saskatoon was 0-1 on the PP; Calgary was 0-2. . . . Calgary got 20 saves from G Nick Schneider. . . . G Nolan Maier, in his eighth straight start for Saskatoon, stopped 30 shots. . . . Announced attendance: 3,579. . . . Darren Steinke was in the building and blogged about it right there.


At Cranbrook, F Sam Steel scored his second goal of the game in OT to give the Regina Pats a 2-1 victory over the Kootenay Ice. . . . Regina (37-25-6) has won four in a row. It is ReginaPats100third in the East Division, three points ahead of Brandon. . . . Kootenay (25-38-5) has lost nine in a row (0-7-2). It is fourth in the Central Division, eight points behind Red Deer with only four games remaining. . . . Regina finished the season series, 3-1-0; Kootenay was 1-2-1. . . . Steel gave the Pats a 1-0 lead at 17:25 of the second period. . . . The Ice tied it at 11:09 of the third period as F Cameron Hausinger got his 19th goal. . . . Steel won it with his 30th goal of the season, just 31 seconds into extra time. . . . Regina was 0-2 on the PP; Kootenay was 0-4. . . . The Pats got 19 saves from G Max Paddock. . . . G Duncan McGovern stopped 32 shots for the home team. . . . The Pats are 6-1-0 in a stretch of eight straight road games that concludes tonight in Lethbridge. The Pats have been out of the Brandt Centre while the Tim Hortons Brier (the Canadian men’s curling championship) is held. It is to conclude on Sunday. . . . Announced attendance: 2,642.


At Lethbridge, the Red Deer Rebels scored the game’s last four goals and beat the Hurricanes, 4-1. . . . Red Deer (25-30-13) had lost its previous two games. It is third in the Red DeerCentral Division, seven points behind Lethbridge and eight in front of Kootenay. . . . Lethbridge (32-29-6) has lost four straight. It is second in the division, eight points behind Medicine Hat. . . . The Hurricanes are 4-1-0 in the season series; the Rebels are 1-2-2. . . . D Calen Addison’s ninth goal, at 13:38 of the first period, gave the home side a 1-0 edge. . . . F Kristian Reichel (30) tied it at 17:01. . . . F Brandon Hagel (14) scored a shorthanded goal at 3:42 of the second period to give Red Deer its first lead. . . . Red Deer F Mason McCarty put it away with two third-period goals, at 13:28, on a PP, and at 18:32, into an empty net. He’s got 37 goals. . . . Hagel also had two assists, with McCarty adding one. . . . Red Deer was 1-5 on the PP; Lethbridge was 0-4. . . . The Rebels got 26 saves from G Riley Lamb. At the other end, Logan Flodell blocked 22. . . . Announced attendance: 4,933.


At Medicine Hat, D David Quenneville drew four assists to help the Tigers to a 6-4 victory over the Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . Medicine Hat (35-25-8) leads the Central Division, by Tigers Logo Officialeight points over Lethbridge. . . . Edmonton (19-41-8) has lost four in a row. . . . The The Tigers won the season series, 6-0-0; the Oil Kings were 0-4-2). . . . Tigers F Mark Rassell became the WHL’s fourth 50-goal man this season when he opened the scoring at 2:46 of the first period. . . . The Oil Kings tied it at 7:45 on F David Kope’s 13th goal. . . . Medicine Hat went ahead 3-1 on goals from F Ryan Chyzowski (20), on a PP, at 8:39 and F Elijah Brown (8), at 16:36. . . . D Ethan Cap (5) pulled the visitors to within a goal at 9:08 of the second period, but F Jaeger White (10) got that one back at 11:41. . . . The Oil Kings tied it on goals from F Colton Kehler (30), at 15:53 of the second, and D Conner McDonald (8), at 10:41 of the third. . . . Medicine Hat F Josh Williams (10) gave his side a 5-4 lead, on a PP, at 13:33, and F James Hamblin (21) added a PP goal at 15:09. . . . Brown and D Linus Nassen had two assists each for the winners, with Chyzowski getting one. . . . Hope had one assist for Edmonton. . . . The Tigers were 3-6 on the PP; the Oil Kings were 0-1. . . . G Michael Bullion stopped 27 shots for Medicine Hat. . . . Edmonton G Todd Scott, who last played on Feb. 19, turned aside 24 shots. . . . D Joel Craven was in Medicine Hat’s lineup for the first time since Jan. 27. . . . Announced attendance: 3,311.


At Kamloops, the Kelowna Rockets skated to a workmanlike 4-2 victory over the Blazers to snap a five-game losing skid. . . . Kelowna (39-22-7) had been 0-4-1 in its previous five KelownaRocketsgames. It leads the B.C. Division, by three points over Victoria. . . . Kamloops (29-34-5) has lost two straight and has been eliminated from the playoff picture. It is 11 points out of a playoff berth with only four games remaining. . . . The Rockets are 7-0-0 in the season series; the Blazers are 0-6-1. They’ll finish the series tonight in Kelowna. . . . The Blazers got off to a tough start when they turned the puck over high in the Kelowna zone while on the PP. Rockets F Marek Skvrne grabbed the puck and went in alone to scored his third goal of the season, at 5:59 of the first period. . . . F Carsen Twarynski made it 2-0 with his 43rd goal — he has goals in four straight games — at 6:59 of the second period. . . . F Orrin Centazzo gave Blazers fans some hope when he scored his 11th goal on a penalty shot at 9:12. . . . The Rockets restored their two-goal lead at 12:18 as F Dillon Dube (33) sniped on a PP. . . . Kelowna F Kole Lind added his 38th goal at 17:30 of the third period. . . . Kamloops got a PP goal from D Nolan Kneen (7) at 19:53. . . . F Kyle Topping had two assists for Kelowna, and Dube, who was playing in his 200th game, had one. . . . Kelowna was 1-7 on the PP; Kamloops was 1-4. . . . The Rockets got 36 saves from G Brodan Salmond, while Dylan Ferguson of the Blazers blocked 34 shots. . . . The Blazers scratched D Luke Zazula, whose season appears to be over, and D Montana Onyebuchi. . . . Announced attendance: 3,652.


At Kennewick, Wash., the Tri-City Americans erased a 1-0 lead with five straight goals en route to a 6-2 victory over the Vancouver Giants. . . . Tri-City (33-24-9) had lost its TriCity30previous four games (0-3-1). It holds down the Western Conference’s first wild-card spot, one point ahead of Seattle. . . . Vancouver (34-24-9) is third in the B.C. Division, five points behind Victoria. . . . The Giants will play in Spokane tonight, then travel back to Kennewick for a Sunday rematch with the Americans. . . . Last night, Vancouver went ahead 1-0 when F Ty Ronning scored his 57th goal at 2:12 of the first period. . . . The Americans responded with three goals in the last four minutes of the period — from F Morgan Geekie (27), on a PP, at 16:05; F Jordan Topping (37), at 17:52; and F Sasha Mutala, at 18:18. . . . Tri-City F Nolan Yaremko’s 20th goal, at 18:10 of the second period, made it 4-1, and Mutala’s 11th goal stretched the lead to 5-1 at 6:59 of the third period. . . . D Dylan Plouffe (9) got Vancouver’s second goal, on a PP, at 11:48. . . . D Juuso Valimaki (12) scored Tri-City’s final goal, at 17:45. . . . Geekie and F Michael Rasmussen each had two assists for the winners, with Mutala, Topping and Valimaki adding one each. . . . Vancouver was 2-3 on the PP; Tri-City was 1-5. . . . G Patrick Dea earned the victory with 27 saves. . . . G David Tendeck stopped 34 shots for Vancouver. . . . F Milos Roman (ankle) returned to the Giants’ lineup for the first time since Jan. 9. He had eight goals and 21 assists in 34 games when he went out with the injury. . . . Announced attendance: 3,613.


At Victoria, F Tanner Kaspick’s second goal, this one in OT, gave the Royals a 4-3 victory over the Prince George Cougars. . . . Victoria (38-25-6) is second in the B.C. Division, three VictoriaRoyalspoints behind Kelowna. . . . Prince George (23-36-9) has lost four in a row (0-3-1). . . . The Royals lead the season series, 4-2-1; the Cougars are 3-2-2. . . . They’ll play again Sunday afternoon in Victoria. . . . The Royals took a 2-0 lead on goals from F Dante Hannoun (24), at 10:55 of the first period, and Kaspick, at 4:55 of the second. . . . The Cougars scored the next three goals. . . . F Reid Perepeluk scored his first WHL goal, at 19:30 of the second period, to get it started. . . . D Rhett Rhinehart (2) tied the score at 3:58 of the third period, and F Josh Maser’s 28th goal, at 7:19, gave the visitors a 3-2 lead. . . . Victoria F Tyler Soy (36) forced OT at 17:03 of the third period. . . . Kaspick’s 25th goal of the season won it at 2:39 of OT. . . . Kaspick has nine game-winners this season — six in 22 games with Victoria and three in 35 games with Brandon. . . . F Matthew Phillips and Hannoun each drew two assists for Victoria, with Soy getting one. . . . F Aaron Boyd had two assists for the Cougars. . . . Prince George was 0-1 on the PP; Victoria was 0-3. . . . G Dean McNabb started for Victoria and stopped 30 of 33 shots in 47:19. Griffen Outhouse finished up, stopping all five shots he faced in 15:20. . . . The Cougars got 39 stops from G Tavin Grant. . . . Announced attendance: 6,629.


At Kent, Wash., the Seattle Thunderbirds erased a 2-1 deficit to beat the Spokane Chiefs, 4-2. . . . Seattle (32-25-10), the WHL’s defending champion, has clinched a playoff spot. It Seattleholds down the Western Conference’s second wild-card spot. . . . Spokane (39-23-5) is third in the U.S. Division, six points behind Portland. . . . Seattle leads the season series, 4-2-1; Spokane is 3-4-0. . . . D Filip Kral (8) put the Chiefs out front 1-0 at 2:14 of the first period. . . . Seattle tied it at 17:04 on a PP goal from F Zack Andrusiak. . . . The visitors went ahead 2-1 when F Riley Woods (22) scored, on a PP, at 2:28 of the second period. . . . Andrusiak (33) tied it at 8:49. . . . D Austin Strand scored Seattle’s last two goals, giving it a 3-2 lead at 6:16 of the third period, then adding insurance, on a PP, at 15:05. He has 23 goals. . . . Seattle got three assists from F Nolan Volcan and two from F Donovan Neuls. . . . Woods had one assists for the Chiefs. . . . Seattle was 2-2 on the PP; Spokane was 1-3. . . . G Liam Hughes stopped 25 shots for Seattle. . . . Spokane G Donovan Buskey stopped 18 shots. . . . Announced attendance: 5,317.


SATURDAY (all times local):

Swift Current at Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.

Calgary at Prince Albert, 7 p.m.

Brandon at Saskatoon, 7:05 p.m.

Regina at Lethbridge, 7 p.m.

Medicine Hat at Red Deer, 7 p.m.

Tri-City at Portland, 6 p.m.

Kamloops at Kelowna, 7:05 p.m.

Everett vs. Seattle, at Kent, Wash., 7:05 p.m.

Vancouver at Spokane, 7:05 p.m.


TWEET OF THE DAY

Scattershooting on a quiet Thursday . . . Organ donors front and centre . . . Four teams with special games this weekend

Scattershooting

Firstly, a huge thank you to the WHL and its 17 Canadian teams for all they have done and are doing in helping to raise awareness of the importance of organ donation.

If you’re a regular here, you know how much this means to me because of my wife, Dorothy, having received a kidney more than four years ago. She helped out with the selling of 200 mini-helmets on Friday when the Kamloops Blazers did their part and wore the Don Cherry-themed sweaters. It’s worth noting that while there Dorothy was approached by three different women who have been kidney donors. As Dorothy says, “Donors are the real heroes.”

On Thursday, she volunteered at a World Kidney Day function that was arranged by nursing students from Thompson Rivers University.

If you are interested in how she is doing, there’s more right here, including video that appeared on CFJC-TV today.

Don’t forget that four WHL teams — the Kelowna Rockets, Red Deer Rebels, Saskatoon Blades and Victoria Royals — will hold their Organ Donor Awareness Nights this weekend.


You are aware that the WHL season is into its final 11 days, but are you aware there hasn’t been an in-season coaching change for a second straight season? In fact, the last in-season coaching change occurred in 2015-16 when Lorne Molleken was dismissed as the head coach of the Vancouver Giants. Of course, that happened with just two games left in the season so likely shouldn’t count.


When you pay attention to a television event like the Super Bowl or the Oscars while also keeping an eye on a computer, you are left to wonder what all the closet comedians did before Twitter.


Hey, Ichiro is going to be back with the Seattle Mariners this season. What better place for him to finish up his hall-of-fame career.


Next season’s WHL schedule will have each team play 68 games, down four from recent seasons. That means each team will play two fewer home games. . . . There are 22 teams in the WHL. With season-ticket renewals on the way to fans, what is the over-under for the number of teams that will have lowered their prices?


Oh, here’s a note that just arrived from a fan who has received his renewal offer from his favourite team:

“ ‘More money for less product’ is not a good marketing tool. I’m not sure what they’re thinking, charging more money for fewer games when attendance is down in nearly all WHL markets this season. I still maintain it’s a great deal for the price you pay vs. the quality of the hockey, but I’m much more than a casual fan and they’re obviously having challenges getting people to games.”


If you are on Twitter and haven’t seen it, I would suggest you visit Slava Malamud’s account at @SlavaMalamud and read his 21-take analysis of the KHL and how this season’s championship has been pre-determined. The whole explanation is gold. . . . None of that will be news to The MacBeth Report, who has been keeping me filled in on Putin’s pals and their roles in the KHL for a while now.


Whenever I watch curling on TSN, I am left thinking that Russ Howard may be the best analyst on TV today. Any sport. Any channel. Any stream. The chemistry between Cheryl Bernard, Vic Rauter and Howard is rarely heard in a three-person broadcast team.


Watching Brendan Leipsic score in OT and draw two assists for Vancouver on Monday night had me wondering: How long before the Canucks acquire Ty Rattie from the Edmonton Oilers? Rattie was a pure sniper when he was with the Portland Winterhawks, but really hasn’t been able to find an NHL home. Vancouver head coach Travis Green had Rattie in Portland and knows what he can do, just like he knows all about Leipsic, another Portland product.


If the WHL playoffs started today, one first-round series would feature the Portland Winterhawks and Spokane Chiefs. On Thursday, Dylan Bumbarger (@dylandb) tweeted: “Series starts in Portland even if the Winterhawks don’t have home ice because Spokane is hosting NCAA regional women’s basketball.”


If you aren’t a fan of the Boston Bruins, don’t ever watch one of their games on NESN on a full stomach. Why not? Well, there are broadcasters who leave you wondering what game they’re watching, and then there is Jack Edwards, whose work is slanted beyond comprehension. How slanted? If he has a vote for the Lady Byng Trophy, you can bet he’s writing in Brad Marchand’s name.



TheCoachingGame

The MJHL’s Waywayseecappo Wolverines have signed Taylor Harnett, their general manager and head coach, to what the club called a “multi-year contract extension.” . . . Harnett joined the team in November after first-year coach Arnie Caplan was dismissed following a 1-16-1 start. The Wolverines finished the season with an 8-48-4 record. They didn’t make the playoffs as they had the 11-team league’s poorest record.


The AJHL’s Olds Grizzlys have released Adam Redmond, their general manager and head coach, and Doug Hergenhein, who was the head scout and director of player personnel. . . . Redmond was an associate coach with the AJHL’s Calgary Canucks before signing with Olds prior to this season. . . . The Grizzlys finished 18-37-5, placing eighth in the eight-team Viterra South Division. . . . Hergenhein was in his first season with Olds.


IF THE PLAYOFFS OPENED TODAY …

EASTERN CONFERENCE

Prince Albert at Moose Jaw

Brandon at Medicine Hat

Regina at Swift Current

Red Deer at Lethbridge

——

WESTERN CONFERENCE

Seattle at Everett

Tri-City at Kelowna

Spokane at Portland

Vancouver at Victoria


Scoreboard

THURSDAY:

No Games Scheduled.


FRIDAY (all times local):

Moose Jaw at Prince Albert, 7 p.m.

Swift Current at Brandon, 7:30 p.m.

Calgary at Saskatoon, 7:05 p.m.

Regina vs. Kootenay, at Cranbrook, B.C., 7 p.m.

Red Deer at Lethbridge, 7 p.m.

Edmonton at Medicine Hat, 7:30 p.m.

Kelowna at Kamloops, 7 p.m.

Vancouver vs. Tri-City, at Kennewick, Wash., 7:05 p.m.

Prince George at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.

Spokane vs. Seattle, at Kent, Wash., 7:35 p.m.

Golden boy gets NHL deal . . . Thompson, Wheaties blank ‘Canes . . . Royals stop streaking Chiefs

A LITTLE OF THIS . . .

F Tyler Steenbergen of the Swift Current Broncos has signed a three-year entry-level SCBroncoscontract with the NHL’s Arizona Coyotes. They selected him in the fifth round of the NHL’s 2017 draft. . . . Steenbergen, who turned 20 on Jan. 7, is from Red Deer. The Broncos selected him in the first round of the WHL’s 2013 bantam draft. . . . Last season, he put up 41 goals and 39 assists in 72 games. He has followed that up with 44 goals and 54 assists in 51 games this season. . . . Steenbergen also scored the winning goal with 1:40 left in the third period as Canada won the 2018 World Junior Championship with a 2-1 victory over Sweden in Buffalo on Jan. 5.


The Regina Pats have signed F Carter Massier and G Matthew Pesenti, both 16, to WHL contracts. . . . Massier, from Peace River, Alta., is a list player who played for the midget AAA Grande Prairie Storm, putting up 20 goals and 19 assists in 35 games. . . . Pesenti, also a list player, will turn 17 on Saturday. He was 9-14-0, 3.35, .900 with the midget AAA Saskatoon Blazers. Pesenti was on the Pats’ bench in Medicine Hat on Tuesday night backing up Max Paddock with Ryan Kubic injured.


JUST NOTES . . .

G Rayce Ramsay, who turned 17 on Jan. 3, is practising with the Kamloops Blazers this week. A list player from Saskatoon, he was 15-14-0, 2.83, .910 with the midge AAA Saskatoon Contacts this season. . . .

The Red Deer Rebels have added F Zak Smith, 16, to their roster. This season, he had 22 points, including 11 goals, in 46 games with the MJHL’s Neepawa Natives. . . . Smith, from Austin, Man., played in six games with the Rebels earlier in the season.


TheCoachingGame

The AJHL’s Drayton Valley Thunder is looking for a head coach after Ryan Rechner posted on Twitter on Monday night that “I regret to inform you I’ve resigned effective immediately.” . . . According to Laine Mitchell of rdnewsnow.com, “There have been five Thunder coaches leave the team since the 2015-16 season.” . . . Rechner took over from Kyle Adams as head coach in November after the Thunder started the season with three wins in 21 games. . . . The Thunder went on to finish 17-40-3. . . . Jason Nicholetts, the team’s director of player development, also has resigned. He also tweeted on Monday night, saying that “I have chosen to resign my position with the organization effective immediately.” . . . There also is speculation that general manager Joey Bouchard also is leaving. However, Mitchell reported that Monte Waronek, the franchise’s president and governor, “was unable to confirm if he was or not.” . . . On Tuesday afternoon, head scout Travis Gibson revealed that he, too, had resigned.

Mitchell’s piece is right here.


IF THE PLAYOFFS OPENED TODAY …

EASTERN CONFERENCE

Prince Albert at Moose Jaw

Brandon at Medicine Hat

Regina at Swift Current

Red Deer at Lethbridge

——

WESTERN CONFERENCE

Seattle at Everett

Tri-City at Kelowna

Spokane at Portland

Vancouver at Victoria


Scoreboard

TUESDAY:

At Brandon, F Ty Lewis and F Stelio Mattheos joined the 40-goal club and G Logan Thompson put up the shutout as the Wheat Kings dumped the Lethbridge Hurricanes, 6-BrandonWKregular0. . . . Brandon (35-26-5) is fourth in the East Division, three points behind Regina. The Wheat Kings hold down the Eastern Conference’s first wild-card spot, six points ahead of Prince Albert. . . . Lethbridge (32-27-6) has lost two in a row. It is second in the Central Division, six points behind Medicine Hat. The Hurricanes have two games in hand. . . . Mattheos opened the scoring, on a PP, at 6:45 of the first period. . . . F Luka Burzan (12) upped it to 2-0 at 14:14, and Lewis made it 3-0 at 19:33. . . . Mattheos got his 40th goal, on a PP, at 3:35 of the second period, with Lewis getting No. 41, on another PP, at 16:41. . . . D Chase Hartje (3) scored Brandon’s last goal, at 16:42 of the third period. . . . Lewis also had two assists for a four-point night, while Mattheos added one helper. . . . The Wheat Kings also got two assists from each of F Rylan Bettens, F Linden McCorrister and F Cole Reinhardt. . . . Brandon was 3-6 on the PP; Lethbridge was 0-8. . . . Thompson stopped 32 shots in recording his third shutout of the season and the fourth of his career. . . . Lethbridge starter Logan Flodell was beaten three times on nine shots in the first period. Reece Klassen played the final 40 minutes, giving up three goals on 24 shots. . . . Announced attendance: 3,312.


At Saskatoon, the Blades gave up a 3-0 lead before coming back to beat the Edmonton Oil Kings, 6-5. . . . Saskatoon (32-31-3) had lost its previous four games. It is two points behind SaskatoonPrince Albert, which holds down the Eastern Conference’s second wild-card spot. The Raiders have a game in hand. . . . Edmonton (19-39-8) has lost two in a row. . . . The Blades got that 3-0 lead on goals from F Michael Darren (9), on a PP, at 6:17 of the first period; F Eric Florchuk (15), on another PP, at 15:00; and D Dawson Davidson (10), who also had three assists, at 0:56 of the second period. . . . Edmonton tied it by scoring three times in 3:37 in the second period. . . . F Kobe Mohr (11) got it started at 5:36. F Carter Souch (4) got the visitors to within a goal, on a PP, at 6:59. F Brett Kemp (15) tied it at 9:13. . . . However, the Blades scored twice before the period ended, with F Max Gerlach (28) counting, on a PP, at 15:37, and F Josh Paterson getting his 39th at 17:44. . . . D Conner McDonald (7) scored for Edmonton at 9:54 of the third period, but Saskatoon F Braylon Shmyr (35) got that one back, on another PP, at 12:39. . . . F Colton Kehler (28) of the Oil Kings closed out the scoring at 19:43. . . . The Blades got three assists from F Kirby Dach, two from Gerlach, and one each from Shmyr and Farren. . . . Soustal had two assists for Edmonton, giving him 100 for his career, and Kemp had one. . . . Saskatoon was 4-7 on the PP; Edmonton was 1-5. . . . The Blades got 26 stops from G Nolan Maier. . . . G Boston Bilous stopped 30 shots for Edmonton. . . . Announced attendance: 3,379.

At Medicine Hat, the Regina Pats scored the game’s last three goals to beat the Tigers, 6-3. . . . Regina (36-25-6) has won three in a row. It is third in the East Division, three points ReginaPats100ahead of Brandon. . . . Medicine Hat (34-25-8) had points in each of its previous seven games (6-0-1). It leads the Central Division, by six points over Lethbridge. . . . F Jesse Gabrielle (12) opened the scoring for Regina at 2:05 of the first period. If you’re wondering, the Pats had 89 entrants in their contest and each person is eligible for a cap. . . . Medicine Hat went ahead 2-1 on goals from F Tyler Preziuso (14), at 7:00, and F Henry Rybinski (3) just 56 seconds later. . . . F Koby Morrisseau pulled Regina even at 19:45. . . . F Emil Oksanen (16) gave Regina a 3-2 lead, on a PP, at 4:12 of the second period. . . . F Mark Rassell (49) tied it again at 17:43. . . . Regina won it with three late third-period goals, from D Libor Hajek (12), on a PP, at 15:17; Morrisseau (5), at 15:52; and D Josh Mahura (22), on a PP, at 17:18. . . . Gabrielle, Oksanen, Mahura and Hajek each had an assist for Regina. . . . The Pats were 3-3 on the PP; the Tigers were 0-2. . . . G Max Paddock earned the victory with 24 saves. . . . G Michael Bullion stopped 23 shots for Medicine Hat. . . . Phil Andrews, the radio voice of the Pats, called his 500th WHL game. . . . Announced attendance: 2,878.


At Prince George, F Ty Kolle broke a 3-3 tie late in the third period as the Portland Winterhawks beat the Cougars, 4-3. . . . Portland (41-20-5) has points in seven straight Portlandgames (6-0-1). It is second in the U.S. Division, six points behind Everett. . . . Prince George (23-35-8) has lost two in a row. . . . The visitors got out to a 2-0 lead on goals from F Joachim Blichfeld (23), at 13:53 of the first period, and F Reece Newkirk (7), at 19:03. . . . The Cougars got even on two quick second-period goals from F Josh Maser (27), at 17:13, and F Ethan Browne (1), at 17:31. . . . F Skyler McKenzie (42) gave the Winterhawks a 3-2 lead at 2:19 of the third period. . . . The Cougars tied it at 3:10 when former Portland F Ilijah Colina (11) scored. . . . Kolle won it with his seventh goal of the season, at 16:53. . . . D Dennis Cholowski, who was acquired from the Cougars in January, had two assists for Portland and was named the game’s first star. . . . Browne added an assist to his first WHL goal for the Cougars. . . . Each team was 0-3 on the PP. . . . The Winterhawks got 20 stops from G Cole Kehler. . . . G Taylor Gauthier made 39 saves for the Cougars. . . . They’ll play again tonight in Prince George. . . . Announced attendance: 2,278.


At Kent, Wash., the Seattle Thunderbirds scored the game’s first four goals and then hung on for a 4-3 victory over the Tri-City Americans. . . . Seattle (31-25-10) had lost its previous Seattletwo games (0-1-1). It holds down the Western Conference’s second wild-card spot, nine points ahead of Kamloops, which has five games remaining. Seattle also is fifth in the U.S. Division, one point behind Tri-City. . . . Tri-City (32-24-9) has lost four in a row (0-3-1). . . . D Austin Strand (21) scored Seattle’s first goal, at 5:19 of the first period. . . . F Zack Andrusiak (31) made it 2-0, on a PP, at 4:31 of the second period, and F Nolan Volcan (30) upped it to 3-0, on a PP, at 9:15. . . . F Matthew Wedman (16) scored Seattle’s fourth goal at 1:00 of the third period. . . . Tri-City’s first goal came from F Morgan Geekie (26), on a PP, at 5:25. . . . F Michael Rasmussen (25) got the Americans to within two goals, on a PP, at 6:19, and F Sasha Mutala (9) made it a one-goal game at 15:31. . . . Volcan added an assist to his goal. . . . The Americans got two assists from each of F Jordan Topping and D Dylan Coghlan. . . . Tri-City was 2-5 on the PP; Seattle was 2-7. . . . Seattle got a big game from G Liam Hughes, who made 40 saves. . . . G Patrick Tea stopped 29 shots for the Americans. . . . Announced attendance: 4,353.


At Victoria, the Royals broke a 3-3 tie with four third-period goals and beat the Spokane Chiefs, 7-3. . . . Victoria (37-24-6) has points in three straight (2-0-1). It is second in the B.C. VictoriaRoyalsDivision, two points behind Kelowna, which has a game in hand. . . . Spokane (38-22-5) had a five-game winning streak snapped. It is third in the U. S. Division, six points behind Portland and eight ahead of Tri-City. . . . The Royals scored the only goals of the first period, from F Braydon Buziak (5), at 3:14, and F Dante Hannoun (23), on a PP, at 6:54. . . . F Hudson Elynuik (28) got Spokane’s first goal, at 11:48 of the second period. . . . F Noah Gregor (28) restored Victoria’s two-goal edge at 16:08. . . . The Chiefs pulled even on goals from F Jaret Anderson-Dolan (36), at 19:39 of the second, and F Kailer Yamamoto (20), at 4:22 of the third period. . . . D Scott Walford gave Victoria a 4-3 lead at 4:46, and F Matthew Phillips (45) added insurance, on a PP, at 10:05. . . . The Royals got an empty-netter from F Tanner Kaspick (23), at 17:29. . . . F Jeff de Wit (11) finished the scoring at 18:48. . . . De Wit, who also had an assist, was playing in his first game since Feb. 7. . . . Kaspick and F Tanner Soy had two assists each for the winners, with Phillips, Hannoun and Gregor adding one each. . . . Yamamoto and Anderson-Dolan each had an assist for Spokane. . . . Victoria was 2-5 on the PP; Spokane was 0-4. . . . G Griffen Outhouse stopped 28 shots for the Royals. In the process, he took over top spot on the franchise list for career victories. He now has 85, one more than Coleman Vollrath (2012-16). . . . The Chiefs got 16 saves from G Dawson Weatherill. . . . They’ll do it all over again tonight in Victoria. . . . Announced attendance: 3,651.


WEDNESDAY (all times local):

Lethbridge at Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.

Edmonton at Prince Albert, 7 p.m.

Calgary at Swift Current, 7 p.m.

Portland at Prince George, 7 p.m.

Vancouver at Kelowna, 7:05 p.m.

Spokane at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.


TWEET OF THE DAY

Weinger gets AHL deal . . . Storm’s Patterson looking to move up . . . Farkas on roll with Portland


A LITTLE OF THIS . . .

F Evan Weinger of the Brandon Wheat Kings has signs a contract with the San Jose Barracuda, the AHL affiliate of the NHL’s San Jose Sharks. . . . Weinger, 20, is from El Segundo, Calif., and came up through the Los Angeles Jr. Kings program. The Wheat Kings acquired him this season from the Portland Winterhawks. . . . In 244 WHL games, he has 63 goals and 76 assists. That includes this season, in which he has 26 goals and 24 assists in 57 games with Brandon. . . . Weinger will stay with the Wheat Kings for as long as their season lasts.


It would appear that Ed Patterson’s coaching days are over with the junior B Kamloops KamStormStorm of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League. The Storm lost 3-2 in double OT to the visiting Revelstoke Grizzlies on Friday night, dropping the first-round playoff series, 4-2. . . . After the game, Patterson told Marty Hastings of Kamloops This Week: “I definitely think I’ve done my time here. I would like to move on to bigger and better coaching roles, if possible. I’ll have to wait and see what’s open.” . . . Patterson, 45, had two stints as the Storm’s head coach (2007-09, 2013-18). Under him, the Storm never missed the KIJHL playoffs and got to the final four times (2008, 2009, 2014, 2015). . . . Patterson played four seasons (1988-92) in the WHL, splitting time with the Seattle Thunderbirds, Swift Current Broncos and Kamloops Blazers. He was part of the Blazers’ 1992 Memorial Cup-championship team. He also has worked as an assistant coach with the Blazers (2010-13). After playing in the WHL, he went on to a pro career that included 68 games in the NHL. . . . His son, Max, is a forward with the Swift Current Broncos.


IF THE PLAYOFFS OPENED TODAY …

EASTERN CONFERENCE

Prince Albert at Moose Jaw

Brandon at Medicine Hat

Regina at Swift Current

Red Deer at Lethbridge

——

WESTERN CONFERENCE

Seattle at Everett

Tri-City at Kelowna

Spokane at Portland

Vancouver at Victoria


Scoreboard

SATURDAY:

At Moose Jaw, F Justin Almeida, who sometimes gets overlooked behind the Warriors’ two big guns, had a goal and two assists in a 5-1 victory over the Saskatoon Blades. . . . MooseJawWarriorsMoose Jaw (48-14-3) continues to lead the overall standings by one point over Swift Current. The Warriors hold one game in hand. . . . Saskatoon (31-31-3) has lost four in a row and is four  points out of a playoff spot with seven games remaining. . . . Almeida totalled 11 goals and 17 assists in 70 games split between Moose Jaw and Prince George last season. This season, in 65 games, he has 38 goals, including eight game-winners, and 49 assists, which should be enough to lift him out of the shadows being cast by F Jayden Halbgewachs, who leads the WHL with 61 goals, and F Brayden Burke, who is tied with Halbgewachs for second in the scoring race with 113 points. . . . Almeida scored the game’s first goal, on a PP, at 4:15 of the first period. . . . D Josh Brook (3) made it 2-0 at 14:27. . . . F Josh Paterson (28) scored for Saskatoon, at 15:31 of the second period. . . . The Warriors put it away with three third-period goals, from Halbgewachs, on a PP, at 10:39; F Brett Howden (23), at 11:13; and F Tristin Langan 916), shorthanded, at 16:32. . . . D Kale Clague also had two assists for the Warriors, with Howden and Halbghewachs adding one apiece. . . . Moose Jaw was 2-5 won the PP; Saskatoon was 0-2. . . . G Brody Willms earned the victory with 25 saves. . . . The Blades got 26 stops from G Nolan Maier. . . . Announced attendance: 3,398.


At Prince Albert, the Raiders ran their winning streak to six games with a 4-1 victory over the Lethbridge Hurricanes. . . . Prince Albert (29-25-11) holds down the Eastern PrinceAlbertConference’s second wild-card spot, four points ahead of Saskatoon. Each team has seven games remaining. . . . Lethbridge (32-26-6) had won its previous three games. It is second in the Central Division, four pints behind Medicine Hat with a game in hand. . . . The Hurricanes took a 1-0 lead at 11:11 of the first period as F Dylan Cozens scored his 21st goal of the season. . . . The Raiders tied it at 12:59 of the second period as D Brayden Pachal (6) scored for the second straight game. . . . D Vojtech Budik (13) broke the tie, on a PP, at 8:51 of the third period as he, too, scored for a second straight game. . . . D Max Martin (7) added insurance at 9:49, and F Cole Fonstad, who also had an assist, got No. 20 at 12:18. . . . Prince Albert was 1-4 on the PP; Lethbridge was 0-4. . . . G Ian Scott stopped 25 shots for the Raiders, six fewer than Logan Flodell of the Hurricanes. . . . The Hurricanes were without F Brad Morrison (ill). . . . The Raiders inducted long-time volunteer Roger Mayert and former D Chris Phillips into their Wall of Honour prior to the game. . . . Announced attendance: 2,043.


At Swift Current, the Broncos scored the game’s last three goals as they beat the Brandon Wheat Kings, 3-1. . . . Swift Current (46-14-6) has points in four straight games (3-0-1). It is SCBroncossecond in the overall standings, one points behind Moose Jaw. . . . Brandon (34-26-5) is fourth in the East Division, one point behind Regina. The Wheat Kings hold down the Eastern Conference’s first wild-card spot, four points ahead of Prince Albert. . . . F Linden McCorrister (16) gave the visitors a 1-0 lead at 5:44 of the first period. . . . The Broncos tied it on F Matteo Gennaro’s 40th goal of the season, at 12:56. . . . F Aleksi Heponiemi (27) broke the tie at 11:16 of the second period. . . . F Beck Malenstyn (14) added the empty-netter at 19:48 of the third period. . . . F Glenn Gawdin had two assists for the Broncos. He leads the WHL scoring race with 122 points. . . . There weren’t any PP opportunities in this one. The only penalties were coincidental roughing minors to Brandon F Marcus Sekundiak and F MacKenzie Wight of the Broncos at 7:17 of the first period. . . . G Stuart Skinner stopped 18 shots for Swift Current. . . . Brandon G Logan Thompson blocked 33 shots. . . . F Kaiden Elder (ill) was among the Broncos’ scratches. . . . Announced attendance: 2,890.


At Calgary, F Sam Steel scored on a breakaway in OT to give the Regina Pats a 3-2 victory over the Hitmen. . . . Regina (34-25-6) moved back into third in the East Division, one ReginaPats100point ahead of Brandon. . . . Calgary (19-35-10) went to OT for a third straight game; it lost all three. The Hitmen have lost five in a row (0-2-3). . . . The Hitmen led this one 2-0 early in the third period. . . . F Tristen Nielsen (14) made it 1-0 at 1:20 of the first period, and F Mark Kastelic (16) upped it to 2-0 at 3:18 of the third. . . . D Aaron Hyman (2) got the Pats to within a goal at 3:56. . . . F Jake Leschyshyn (16) tied the score at 11:46. . . . Steel won it with his 25th goal just 32 seconds into OT. . . . Regina got three assists from F Cam Hebig. . . . Each team was 0-2 on the PP. . . . The Pats got 23 saves from G Max Paddock. . . . Calgary G Nick Schneider stopped 31 shots. . . . Regina was playing its fourth straight road game — it is 3-1-0 — with four more to come. The Pats are out of their building because of the Tim Hortons Brier, the Canadian men’s curling championship. Regina next will play at home on March 14. . . . D Libor Hajek (ill) was among Regina’s scratches. . . . Announced attendance: 7,307.


At Medicine Hat, the Tigers opened up a 4-0 lead en route to a 6-1 victory over the Red Deer Rebels. . . . Medicine Hat (33-24-8) has points in six straight (5-0-1). It leads the Tigers Logo OfficialCentral Division, by four points over Lethbridge. . . . Red Deer (24-29-13) had won its previous three games. It is third in the Central Divison, seven points ahead of Kootenay, which has six games left. . . . F Gary Haden got the Tigers’ first goal, at 2:04 of the first period. . . . The lead grew to 4-0 on second-period goals from F Hayden Ostir (9), at 2:03; F Ryan Jevne, shorthanded, at 11:28; and Haden, who has 17 goals, at 13:28. . . . D Hunter Donohoe (3) scored for Red Deer at 16:14. . . . The Tigers put it away with third-period goals from F James Hamblin (19) and Jevne (20). . . . D David Quenneville and F Mark Rassell each had two assists for the Tigers. . . . Red Deer was 0-2 on the PP; Medicine Hat was 0-4. . . . G Michael Bullion stopped 17 shots for the Tigers. . . . Red Deer starter Riley Lamb was beaten four times on 30 shots in 33:28. Ethan Anders finished up by stopping 22 of 24 shots in 26:31. . . . D Linus Nassen (wrist) was back in the Tigers’ lineup after sitting out 26 games. . . . Announced attendance: 3,920.


At Prince George, the Victoria Royals snapped a 3-3 tie with four third-period goals as they skated to a 7-3 victory over the Cougars. . . . Victoria (36-24-6) had lost its previous VictoriaRoyalsfour games (0-3-1). It is second in the B.C. Division, four points behind Kelowna and three ahead of Vancouver. . . . Prince George (23-34-8) had won three in a row. . . . F Tyler Soy gave Victoria a 1-0 lead, on a PP, at 12:02 of the first period. . . . The Cougars tied it at 15:02 as F Aaron Boyd scored his 12th goal. . . . D Scott Walford’s first goal of the season, at 17:53, gave the Royals a 2-1 lead. . . . The home team tied it 28 seconds into the second period when F Brogan O’Brien (14) scored. . . . D Jared Freadrich (12) scored, on a PP, at 10:15 to send Victoria back out front. . . . F Jackson Leppard (14) got the Cougars back into a tie at 18:03. . . . The Royals took over in the third period. . . . F Noah Gregor (27) broke the tie at 2:12, and D Kade Jensen (7) made it a two-goal game at 3:19. . . . D Chaz Reddekopp, back after missing 20 games, got his seventh goal at 11:01, and F Tarun Fizer (1) finished the scoring, on a PP, at 19:36. . . . The Royals got goals from four difference defencemen for the first time in franchise history. . . . F Matthew Phillips had three assists as he set a Chilliwack/Victoria franchise record for most points (104) in one season. F Mark Santorelli had set the previous record (101) in 2007-08. . . . ’The Royals also got two assists from each of Soy and D Matthew Smith, with Jensen getting one. . . . O’Brien and Leppard had an assist apiece for the Cougars. . . . Victoria was 3-3 on the PP; Prince George was 0-3. . . . G Dean McNabb started for Victoria. He gave up three goals on 15 shots in 38:03, before Griffen Outhouse came on to stop all nine shots he faced in 21:01. McNabb came back in for the final 56 seconds and stopped the only shot sent his way. . . . The Cougars got 29 saves from Tavin Grant. . . . F Tanner Kaspick was among Victoria’s scratches. . . . Announced attendance: 3,241.


At Langley, B.C., the Vancouver Giants clinched a playoff spot with a 5-4 victory over the Kamloops Blazers. . . . Vancouver (33-22-9) had lost two in a row (0-1-1). The Giants, who Vancouverare third in the B.C. Division, have missed the playoffs each of the past three seasons and four of the past five seasons. . . . Kamloops (29-33-5) had won its previous two games. It is seven points from a playoff spot with only five games remaining. . . . The Blazers had beaten the visiting Giants, 5-1, on Friday night. . . . On Saturday night, the Giants opened up a 4-0 lead — they scored three times on their first five shots — and hung on for the victory. . . . D Alex Kannok Leipert (4) opened the scoring at 6:08 of the first period. . . . F Brayden Watts (16) made it 2-0, on a PP, at 14:03. . . . F Hunor Torzsok (1), at 15:20, and D Darian Skeoch (2), at 4:52 of the second period, upped it to 4-0. . . . The Blazers then struck for three goals in 3:52. . . . D Joe Gatenby, who also had three assists and was named first star, scored his 13th goal at 12:27. . . . F Jermaine Loewen (34) got Kamloops to within two goals at 15:13, and F Luc Smith (20) cut the deficit to one at 16:19. . . . F Tyler Benson (23) restored the Giants’ two-goal lead at 17:08. . . . Kamloops got back to within a goal at 7:05 of the third period when D Nolan Kneen scored his sixth goal. . . . The Giants got two assists from F Davis Koch, with Benson adding one. . . . Vancouver was 1-3 on the PP; Kamloops is 0-4. . . . G David Tendeck stopped 30 shots for the winners. . . . Kamloops starter Dylan Ferguson was beaten three times on 12 shots in the first period. Max Palaga started the second period, and gave up two goals on six shots in 17:08. Ferguson came back in and finished up by stopping all eight shots in faced in 21:14. . . . The Blazers again were without D Luke Zazula and D Montana Onyebuchi. . . . D Dylan Plouffe and F Milos Roman were among Vancouver’s scratches, as was F Owen Hardy (ill). . . . Announced attendance: 4,041.


At Everett, F Connor Dewar scored a PP goal in OT to give the Silvertips a 2-1 victory over Everettthe Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . Everett (43-18-5) has won two in a row. It leads the Western Conference by eight points over Portland. . . . Seattle (30-24-10) had won its previous two games. It holds down the Western Conference’s second wild-card spot, seven points ahead of Kamloops. The Thunderbirds have three games in hand. . . . F Patrick Bajkov (30) gave Everett a 1-0 lead at 7:08 of the first period. . . . F Noah Philp (14) pulled Seattle even at 13:43 of the second period. . . . In the third period and OT, the Silvertips held a 27-1 edge in shots on goal. . . . They ended it at 2:57 of extra time on Dewar’s 35th goal of the season. . . . F Matt Fonteyne had two assists for Everett, with Bajkov getting one. . . . Everett was 1-5 on the PP; Seattle was 0-2. . . . G Carter Hart stopped 17 shots for Everett. He now is 28-4-4, 1.53, .950 as he closes in on his third straight goaltender-of-the-year award. . . . Announced attendance: 8,319.


At Kelowna, F Hudson Elynuik scored three times and added an assist to lead the Spokane Chiefs to a 4-2 lead over the Rockets. . . . Spokane (38-21-5) has won five in a SpokaneChiefsrow. It is third in the U.S. Division, two points behind Portland and eight ahead of Tri-City. . . . Kelowna (38-22-6) has lost four straight. It leads the B.C. Division, by four points over Victoria. . . . Elynuik, who has 27 goals, opened the scoring at 7:17 of the first period. . . . Kelowna F Carsen Twarynski (40) tied it, on a PP, at 19:27 of the second period. . . . D Ty Smith (14) gave the Chiefs a 2-1 lead at 5:01 of the third period. . . . The Rockets tied it at 13:41 on F Kole Lind’s 37th goal. . . . Elynuik broke the tie at 18:46, then added insurance at 19:44. . . . F Luke Toporowski had two assists for the winners, with Smith getting one. . . . Kelowna was 1-5 on the PP; Spokane was 0-5. . . . G Dawson Weatherill earned the victory with 22 saves. . . . G James Porter stopped 24 shots for Kelowna. . . . Announced attendance: 5,106.


At Kennewick, Wash., G Shane Farkas posted his second straight shutout in leading the Portland Winterhawks to a 5-0 victory over the Tri-City Americans. . . . Portland (39-20-5) Portlandhas points in five straight (4-0-1). It is second in the U.S. Division, eight points behind Everett. . . . Tri-City (32-23-9) has lost three in a row (0-2-1). It is in the Western Conference’s first wild-card spot, three points ahead of Seattle. . . . F Kieffer Bellows (35) scored the game’s first goal, at 8:55 of the first period, and F Cody Glass got the next two, at 12:43 of the first and 1:17 of the second. . . . Glass now has 33 goals. . . . F Lane Gilliss scored Portland’s other goals, at 8:33 of the second, and 2:06 of the third. He’s got six goals. . . . The Winterhawks got three assists from D Henri Jokiharju, two from D Dennis Cholowski and one from Bellows. . . . Portland was 0-2 on the PP; Tri-City was 0-3. . . . Farkas stopped 30 shots in posting his third shutout of the season. In his last four starts, he is 4-0-0 with two shutouts, having allowed three goals on 120 shots (.975). . . . G Beck Warm started for Tri-City, and gave up four goals on 25 shots in 32:54. Patrick Dea finished up, stopping 17 of 18 shots in 27:06. . . . The Winterhawks are 22-8-2 on the road. . . . Announced attendance: 4,281.


SUNDAY (all times local):

Everett vs. Vancouver, at Langley, B.C., 2 p.m.

Red Deer at Calgary, 4 p.m.

Medicine Hat vs. Kootenay, at Cranbrook, B.C., 4 p.m.

Regina at Edmonton, 4 p.m.

Portland vs. Seattle, at Kent, Wash., 5:05 p.m.


TWEET OF THE DAY