ASK THE COMMISSIONER:
Mr. Commissioner, how excited are you that the WHL’s Facebook page is being used to question and debate the move of the Chilliwack Bruins to Victoria?
Congrats to former WHLer Roy Sommer, now the head coach of the AHL’s Worcester Sharks. He earned his 500th AHL coaching victory Saturday as the Sharks beat the visiting Hershey Bears, 3-2, in a seven-round shootout. . . . Former Vancouver Giants G Tyson Sexsmith was in goal for the Sharks, who tied it with him on the bench for an extra attacker and then won the shootout. . . . Sommer played two seasons (1975-77) for the Calgary Centennials. . . . He is in his 14th consecutive season as an AHL head coach; this is his sixth season with Worcester. . . . Trivia question: Name the three other AHL coaches with at least 500 victories. . . . Fred (Bun) Cook (636), Frank Mathers (610) and John Paddock (589). . . .
If you were wondering, the BCHL’s Penticton Vees have run their league-record winning streak to 32 games. . . . They scored a 7-5 victory over the visiting Westside Warriors on Saturday night. . . .
The Tri-City Herald has its Best of the West 2012 poll, as compiled by Annie Fowler, right here.
In Swift Current, the Regina Pats scored three times on the PP and beat the Broncos, 4-1. . . . F Lane Scheidl broke a 1-1 tie with two PP goals, the first just 22 seconds into the third and the second at 2:14. . . . Scheidl has 40 points, including 21 goals, in 55 games. Last season, he finished with 30 points, 10 of them goals, in 48 games. . . . Regina F Jordan Weal had three assists and now is tied with Portland Winterhawks F Ty Rattie for the WHL scoring lead. Each has 89 points. . . . Broncos F Taylor Vause scored his 31st goal. . . .
In Cranbrook, F Drew Czerwonka scored two goals to help the host Kootenay Ice to a 5-2 victory over the Saskatoon Blades. . . . Czerwonka, who has 13 goals, hadn’t scored since Dec. 29, although he missed a chunk of time with an injury and was playing his fifth game since his return. . . . Czerwonka’s first goal broke a 2-2 tie at 4:52 of the second period. . . . It was Family Faith Night, something started by Ice G Nathan Lieuwen, and the teams combined for 128 minutes in penalties The Blades took 79 of those. . . . The Ice was 2-for-10 on the PP; the Blades were 1-for-5. . . . Lieuwen stopped 22 shots. . . . Saskatoon G Andrey Makarov turned aside 29 shots. . . . Ice F Jonathon Martin shot high and wide on a third-period penalty shot. . . . The Blades had won their last two game, while the Ice had lost two in a row. . . .
In Lethbridge, F Sam Mckechnie scored two goals in the game’s first five minutes and the Hurricanes went on to a 4-1 victory over the Prince Albert Raiders. . . . Mckechnie has 11 goals. . . . D Daniel Johnston drew assists on both those goals. . . . Lethbridge G Liam Liston stopped 31 shots. . . . The Hurricanes are 11th in the 12-team Eastern Conference and just one point behind the Swift Current Broncos. . . .
In Red Deer, the Moose Jaw Warriors scored six times in the second period and skated to an 8-5 victory over the Rebels. . . . The Rebels took a 2-0 lead into the second period and actually led 3-1 when D Cody Thiel scored his first goal at 7:05. . . . Moose Jaw took the lead on goals by F Cam Braes, his 32nd at 10:13 on the PP, F James Henry, his 12th at 11:44, and F Torrin White, his ninth, at 15:34. . . . Red Deer F Charles Inglis tied it, with his 16th, at 17:09. . . . Moose Jaw D Kendall McFaull and Red Deer F Turner Elson, with his 20th, exchanged goals before the period ended and F Justi Kirsch then gave the Warriors the lead for good at 19:38. . . . Kirsch added his 19th goal at 18:08 of the third on the PP. . . . The injury-riddled Rebels dressed 16 skaters, two under the maximum. . . . Red Deer F Joel Hamilton, who scored his fifth goal of the season and later added an assist, was in great discomfort on the bench in the third period. A Saturday night tweet from the Rebels: “F Joel Hamilton is responsive, being transferred to Red Deer Regional Hospital. No update on what the injury is.” . . . Later, this tweet from the Rebels: “The team will give an update on Joel Hamilton's condition in the coming days. Alert, responsive, and good range of motion.” . . .
In Prince George, G Laurent Brossoit turned aside 24 shots as the Edmonton Oil Kings beat the Cougars, 5-0. . . . Brossoit has three shutouts this season, two of them agains the Cougars and both by 5-0 counts. . . . He now shares the Oil Kings’ modern day single-season record with Alex Archibald and Torrie Jung, and holds the career record with five. . . . The Cougars have been blanked nine times. . . . F Rhett Rachinski scored the game’s first two goals, both in the first period, and completed the hat trick at 19:21 of the third period with a shorthanded goal. He has 22 on the season. . . . Rachinski is the fourth 20-goal man on the Edmonton roster. F Dylan Wruck and F Kristians Pelss have 19 apiece. . . . Edmonton D Keegan Lowe was pointless and minus-4 in Friday’s 5-4 OT loss to the host Cougars. Last night, he had three assists and was plus-5. . . . F Jordan Peddle also had three assists. . . . Edmonton D Mark Pysyk didn’t get a point but finished plus-4. . . . Edmonton had Pelss back from a suspension and F Curtis Lazar and F Mason Geertsen back from injury. . . .
In Everett, G Kent Simpson stopped 41 shots to backstop the Silvertips to a 4-2 victory over the Vancouver Giants. . . . Everett F Jari Erricson pulled Everett into a 2-2 tie at 9:29 of the second period on a PP. . . . Erricson has five goals. . . . F Reid Petryk got the winner when he scored his 12th goal at 11:31 of the second. . . . F Josh Birkholz got his 25th into an empty net at 19:12 of the third. . . . Everett F Cody Fowlie had a goal, his 10th, and two assists. . . . F Brendan Gallagher had two assists for the Giants. . . . Vancouver D Neil Manning scored his seventh goal of the season as he played in his 295th regular-season game, tying the Giants’ franchise record. He shares it with F Craig Cunningham. . . . Manning should set the record Tuesday when the Giants meet the Tri-City Americans in Kennewick, Wash. . . .
In Kelowna, F Dylan Willick’s second goal, at 8:20 of the third period, broke a 2-2 tie and gave the Kamloops Blazers a 3-2 victory over the Rockets. . . . The Blazers had beaten the Rockets 5-4 in OT in Kamloops on Friday night. . . . The Blazers got the game’s first two goals, both on the PP, late in the first period. D Bronson Maschmeyer got his 10th at 17:54 and Willick added another at 19:53. . . . Willick has 23 goals in 56 games. Last season, he finished with 24 goals in 72 games. . . . D Myles Bell, with his 11th, got the Rockets to within one at 9:00 of the second and F Carter Rigby, with his 16th, pulled them even at 1:59 of the third. Both Kelowna goals came via the PP. . . . Kamloops G Cole Cheveldave, beaten four times on eight shots and hooked after one period on Friday, stopped 35 shots to get the victory in this one. . . . Kelowna G Adam Brown stopped 34 shots. . . . The Blazers, who lead the Western Conference and the WHL’s overall standings, won their 40th game of the season, the first time the team has reached that plateau since the 2006-07 season. . . . The Eastern Conference-leading Edmonton Oil Kings are scheduled to play in Kamloops on Tuesday. . . .
In Kent, Wash., F Cam Reid scored three times and set up another to help the Portland Winterhawks to a 7-2 victory over the host Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . Reid, 20, has 19 points, including eight goals, in 14 games since joining the Winterhawks from St. Cloud State at the Christmas break. He had 29 points in 37 games last season at SCS, and had 15 in 22 before leaving this season. . . . Portland G Mac Carruth stopped 18 shots for his 34th victory, one shy of the franchise’s single-season record held by Brent Belecki (1997-98). . . . Carruth and Belecki are tied with 79 career victories. The franchise record (105) is held by Darrell May Sr. . . . Portland F Sven Baertschi had a goal and two assists, giving him six points in his last two games. . . . F Oliver Gabriel and F Brendan Leipsic added a goal and two assists each for the Winterhawks. . . . F Burke Gallimore got his 20th goal of the season for Seattle. . . .
In Spokane, the Tri-City Americans erased a 1-0 deficit with three straight goals and went on to beat the Chiefs, 5-3. . . . The Americans hold a 5-3 edge in the 12-game season series. . . . Tri-City F Justin Feser scored shorthanded at 19:51 of the first to forge a 1-1 tie. . . . F Brendan Shinnimin broke the tie with another shorthanded goal, at 12:18 of the second period, and added a PP score at 17:56 of the second. . . . Shinnimin, who also had an assist, has 34 goals. . . . Shinnimin’s three points moved him into sixth on the franchise’s all-time scoring list. He passed F Stu Barnes (285), who owns a piece of the Americans, and F Dylan Gyori (286) last night. . . . Spokane F Liam Stewart got his eighth goal, shorthanded, at 3:25 of the second, but D Sam Grist restored Tri-City’s two-goal lead with his third at 9:12. . . . Tri-City G Ty Rimmer, who appeared to suffered a left-groin injury in a 5-1 loss in Kamloops on Wednesday, stopped 24 shots. He had backed up G Eric Comrie in a 4-2 loss to visiting Portland on Friday night. . . . Spokane G Eric Williams stopped 29 shots. . . . Tri-City F Adam Hughesman had two assists, moving him into fourth on the franchise’s career list, ahead of Terry Degner (195). . . .
SATURDAY’S CHECKING-FROM-BEHIND COUNT:
F Michael Burns, Saskatoon.
F James Henry, Moose Jaw.
F Colton Heffley, Kelowna.
D Myles Bell, Kelowna.
D Damon Severson, Kelowna.
SATURDAY’S CHECKING-TO-THE-HEAD COUNT:
A Saturday afternoon tweet from Pat Siedlecki (@radiopat258), the play-by-play voice of the Lethbridge Hurricanes: “Elton John concert in Lethbridge Apr. 24 sold out in one hour this morning. Fastest-ever sell out for an ENMAX Centre event.”
THE WORLD OF TWITTER:
Sometime on the weekend, former WHLer Cody Eakin began following F Ryan Hanes of the Kamloops Blazers on Twitter. Hanes has a well-earned reputation as a chirper on the ice.
Later Saturday, Eakin tweeted this: “WJ Tryouts? Huh? Won't be going if I break your arm. How would you like that? Huh? — my favorite chirp directed at me from hanesr13.”
Meanwhile . . .
F Taylor Peters of the Portland Winterhawks, who had two assists in a 7-2 victory over the Seattle Thunderbirds in Kent, Wash., tweeted this:
“Big shout out to the super fans in the crowd today shouting ‘You suck Peters’ every time I touched the ice. How'd that turn out for you.”
I never had the good fortune to meet Trent Frayne, a Canadian who was a sports writing giant, but I felt a connection because we both worked at the Brandon Sun and Winnipeg Tribune. . . . Frayne died Saturday at the age of 93.
Frayne was a writer and a story teller. And, in the truest sense of the word, he was a wordsmith. He had an ear for conversation and way of turning what he heard into marvellous columns and stories.
Sandra Martin of The Globe and Mail writes about Frayne right here.
Some writers who knew Frayne remember him right here.
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