Sunday, February 27, 2011

Some Saturday stuff . . .

Brendan Shinnimin (24) and his Americans teammates
were in the pink Friday night. And you’ve gotta love the tie
on the gentleman just over Shinnimin’s right shoulder. Well done, sir!

(Photo by John Allen, AridAcres.com)
The Tri-City Americans donned their pink jerseys Friday night when they entertained the Seattle Thunderbirds at the Toyota Center in Kennewick, Wash.
The Americans won the game, 5-2, before 5,673 fans on was the sixth annual Fred Meyer Breast Cancer Awareness Night.
The fans set a record as the fund-raiser raised a total of $22,258.71, a 10.5-percent increase over last year. It also was the sixth straight season that the total has increased. All told, Americans fans have contributed $92,813 over the event’s history.
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The recruiting war involving American players isn’t going away. Robert Mays in the Boston Globe writes that the NCAA’s Division 1 Legislative Council voted down a proposal that would have swung things in the CHL’s favour. Mays’s story is right here.
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The Swift Current Broncos have lost seven in a row and their playoff hopes are fading. It doesn’t help that F Killian Hutt (concussion) hasn’t played since Dec. 10 and F Justin Dowling (ankle), F Taylor Vause (ankle), F Jordan Evans (concussion) and F Jordan Peddle (two-game suspension) are out. . . . The Broncos lost 4-3 to the visiting Regina Pats on Friday night. That was Regina’s seventh victory in as many games against the Broncos this season. . . . The Broncos have brought back G Derek Tendler, who turned 19 on Jan. 1. Acquired from the Vancouver Giants earlier in the season, he later was assigned to the MJHL’s Winnipeg Saints. . . .
F Brayden Schenn of the Saskatoon Blades should be prepared to hear his name a lot in NHL trade talks as Monday’s deadline arrives. Here’s the latest, via Twitter, from Sportsnet columnist Mark Spector: “Hemsky-to-LA trade a non-starter w/o Brayden Schenn coming back to Oil. LA not ready to deal Schenn today. This is a Monday deal, if at all.” . . . Spector also columnized on the subject and that piece is right here. . . .
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The NHL’s Nashville Predators’ lineup on Saturday included D Jon Blum, a product of the Vancouver Giants who is from Long Beach, Calif., and F Blake Geoffrion, who is from Nashville. . . . In other words, the NCAA vs. CHL war isn’t going to end soon. . . .
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There was some ownershjip news in the QMJHL on Saturday, as a chunk of the Quebec Remparts changed hands. The Montreal Gazette has more right here. . . . Meanwhile, the Moncton Times and Transcript reports that the QMJHL’s Moncton Wildcats badly want to hold an outdoor game. That story is right here.
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On the Ice in the QMJHL, the Victoriaville Tigers beat Saint John 2-1, handing the Sea Dogs their first regulation loss in 2011. The Sea Dogs had picked up points in 22 straight games, going 21-0-1. . . .
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F Shayne Wiebe scored twice last night, and the first one was the 100th of his WHL career, as his Brandon Wheat Kings went on to beat the visiting Regina Pats, 9-3. The Wheat Kings have won nine in a row on home ice. Overall, they have won seven of eight and 13 of 17. . . . Brandon F Matt MacKay had an assist to run his point streak to 17 games. He has 35 points, including 13 goals, over that stretch. Only Tri-City F Brendan Shinnimin (21 games) has had a longer streak this season. . . . The Wheat Kings have scored at least seven goals in five of their last 10 games. . . .
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Barring a playoff meeting, the Saskatoon Blades made their final visit to the Crushed Can in Moose Jaw last night. You can bet it was a fun place to be, what with 2,869 fans in the pews. . . . The Blades won 2-1 on F Curtis Hamilton’s shootout goal. . . . Gotta think Blades GM/head coach Lorne Molleken took a long look around before he exited. He has a long history as a player, coach and GM in that building. . . . Actually thought he might toss a water bottle or a stick or something, you know, just for old time’s sake. . . .
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Edmonton D Adrian Van de Mosselaer played in his 209th regular-season game last night and had his first two-goal game in a 5-2 victory over the visiting Lethbridge Hurricanes. He has 15 career goals, seven of them this season. . . . Attendance in Edmonton was a season-high 8,361. . . . The Oil Kings were without D Mark Pysyk, their captain, after he left Friday’s 6-3 loss in Lethbridge in the second period with an upper body injury. . . . F Tyler Pitlick had his first three-goal game as the host Medicine Hat Tigers dumped the Prince Albert Raiders, 7-3. Pitlick, a draft pick of the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers, has 62 points in 55 games. . . . The Tigers got two goals from F Emerson Etem, who now has 38 goals in 56 games, and that is one more than he scored in 72 games last season as a freshman. . . . The Tigers welcomed back D Patrik Parkkonen (shoulder) last night. . . . Medicine Hat F Linden Vey drew three assists and now leads the WHL with 105 points, two more than Spokane F Tyler Johnson. . . .
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F Geordie Wudrick scored the game’s last two goals as the Kelowna Rockets skated to a 4-3 OT victory over the Hitmen in Calgary. Wudrick, who has 36 goals, tied it at 16:33 of the third and won it 59 seconds into OT. . . . Kelowna F Colton Sissons, a 17-year-old from North Vancouver, is turning into a force with which to be reckoned. He had a goal and two assists in Calgary, and now has 35 points in 57 games. He has 12 points over his last seven games. . . . Portland F Nino Niederreiter had two goals, including the winner with 33.9 seconds left in the third, as the Winterhawks beat the Seattle Thunderbirds (of Kent), 4-3, in Kent, Wash. . . . The victory was the 100th in the WHL for Winterhawks GM/head coach Mike Johnston. . . . Portland G Keith Hamilton stopped 28 shots in his second straight start in the absence of Mac Carruth. He hasn’t played since being hit by Prince George F Spencer Asuchak on Tuesday. Asuchak, who was given a major and game misconduct, is serving a three-game suspension. . . . Last night, Portland F Ty Rattie left in the third period and didn’t return. . . .
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After a run of five straight OT games, the Kamloops Blazers finally won in regulation, beating the host Kootenay Ice 8-5 in Cranbrook. . . . The Blazers went 4-0-1 on a swing through the Central Division. . . . Kamloops RW Jordan DePape, who is playing on the back end with three defenceman out, had a goal and two assists, and was plus-4. . . . This was the Ice’s first home game since Jeff Chynoweth, the franchise’s president, governor and GM, admitted frustration at attendance figures. On this night, the attendance was 2,514, which is 24 above the season average. . . .
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When Vancouver beat the host Chilliwack Bruins 5-1 last night, it was victory No. 518 for Giants head coach Don Hay. That ties him with the late Pat Ginnell for third on the WHL’s all-time list. . . . Vancouver G Brendan Jensen stopped 16 shots in his first start since Jan. 15. . . . The Spokane Chiefs have beaten Tr-City four straight times after a 3-1 victory over the visiting Americans last night. The Chiefs lead the season series, 6-4-0, with two games remaining. . . . The Americans can clinch a playoff spot with a victory in Vancouver tonight. Tri-City has beaten Vancouver six straight times, including twice this season.
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And now there are five Eastern Conference teams assured playoff spots, with the Edmonton Oil Kings and Brandon Wheat Kings looking like they’ll finish sixth and seventh, or seventh and sixth. That leaves the Prince Albert Raiders and Lethbridge Hurricanes to scrap over the last spot. They’re tied right now, with the Regina Pats three points back. Each of those three teams has nine gmes remaining. . . .
In the Western Conference, the Chilliwack Bruins and Seattle Thunderbirds have some catching up to do. The Bruins are six points behind the eighth-place Prince George Cougars. Yes, Chilliwack has three games in hand but those aren’t worth anything if you don’t win them. . . . The Thunderbirds are eight points shy of that last spot. . . . And how about those Kamloops Blazers. Two weeks ago, they were struggling to hang on to that eighth spot and looking at a five-game trip in the Central Division, that included stops in Red Deer, Medicine Hat and Kootenay, where the Eastern Conference’s Nos. 2, 3 and 4 seeds live. . . . The Blazers lost in OT in Red Deer, won in OT in Medicine Hat and beat the Ice in regulation. Kamloops now is seventh, just a point behind Everett and one up on Prince George.

gdrinnan@kamloopsnews.ca
     
gdrinnan.blogspot.com
     
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