Friday, December 13, 2013

Rockets storm back in Brandon

 F Pavel Brendl (Calgary, 1998-2001) has been returned to Pardubice by Brno (both Czech Republic, Extraliga) at the end of the loan period. He had four assists in six games with Brno. . . .

D David Hoda (Chilliwack, 2007-08) signed for the rest of this season with Orlova (Czech Republic, 2. Liga). He started the season with Polonia Bytom (Poland, Ekstraliga) and had two goals and two assists in 15 games.
The headline is: Hockey was his life but hazing nearly ended it. . . . Roy MacGregor of The Globe and Mail tells the story right here.
Rob Vanstone, in the Regina Leader-Post:
“Something is wrong with this picture: Thanks to the WHL’s partial interlocking schedule, the Portland Winterhawks will not pay a visit to Saskatchewan this season. That is truly unfortunate for hockey fans who would enjoy watching the league’s highest-scoring team.
“The Winterhawks are more than happy to deploy Saskatchewan-born star players, such as left-winger Taylor Leier (who is from Saskatoon) and defenceman Derrick Pouliot (Weyburn). In return for mining this region for talent, the Winterhawks — and every Western Conference team — should play in every rink every season. Fans in all WHL cities should be able to see every team at least once. Is that too much to ask?
“Alas, the answer is yes.”
In Prince Albert, F Matt Needham had two goals and two assists to lead the Kamloops Blazers to a 4-2 victory over the Raiders. . . . The Blazers, who ended a franchise-record 13-game losing streak in Regina on Wednesday, now have won two in a row. . . . Needham broke a 1-1 tie at 6:17 of the second period and gave his side a 3-1 lead just 21 seconds later. . . . Kamloops D Ryan Rehill was pointless but finished plus-3. . . . Needham was plus-4. . . . Two Raiders — F Dakota Conroy and F Leon Draisaitl — were minus-4. . . . Kamloops G Taran Kozun, who once played for the midget AAA Prince Albert Mintos, stopped 39 shots. . . . The Raiders, who now have lost five in a row, chose not to start G Cole Cheveldave, who was acquired from Kamloops over the summer. . . . Raiders G Nick McBride stopped 24 shots. . . . D Mackenze Stewart, an 18-year-old from Calgary, scored his first WHL goal for the Raiders and it was the Teddy Bear goal. He has played in 24 games, 18 of them this season. . . . Andrew Schopp of the Prince Albert Daily Herald has a game story right here.

In Saskatoon, F Connor Gay broke a 2-2 tie at 5:42 of the second period and the Regina Pats went on to a 5-3 victory over the Blades. . . . Gay, who also had an assist, has six goals. . . . The Pats are 6-2-2 in their last 10. They have moved into fifth in the Eastern Conference, one point ahead of the Brandon Wheat Kings. . . . Regina G Dawson MacAuley stopped 33 shots. . . . F Braden Christoffer had two goals, giving him seven, and an assist for the Pats. . . . F Nikita Scherback scored twice and added an assist for the Blades. He’s got 20 goals in his freshman season. . . . Saskatoon has lost eight straight games. . . .

In Brandon, the Kelowna Rockets completed an amazing comeback in beating the Wheat Kings 6-5 on F Myles Bell’s goal at 2:25 of OT. . . . The Rockets, who have won nine straight and 10 in a row on the road, actually trailed 5-3 with 40 seconds left in the third period. . . . With G Jackson Whistle on the bench, the Rockets got goals from F Ryan Olsen, at 19:22 of the third, and Bell, at 19:51, to force extra time. . . . The game drew 4,218 fans, the second-largest crowd of this season in Brandon. . . . Bell, who has 14 goals, also had an assist. . . . F Zach Franko, one of two players on the Rockets’ roster who is from Manitoba, helped out with a goal, his eighth, and two assists, while F Tyson Baillie, who somehow didn’t get invited to the Top Prospects Game, had three helpers. . . . Brandon got two goals and an assist from F Peter Quenneville. He’s got 15 points, including eight goals, in 16 games. . . . The Rockets lead the overall standings by four points over the Portland Winterhawks. . . . Here’s how Rob Henderson of the Brandon Sun began his game story: “Now we know why it’s the fat lady and not Neil Diamond who decides when games are over. With about a minute and a half left in the third period, the Brandon Wheat Kings had a two-goal lead over the Western Hockey League-leading Kelowna Rockets and ‘Sweet Caroline’, normally the hallmark of a victory by the home team, was pumping over the sound system. In the blink of an eye, the Rockets were celebrating a 6-5 overtime victory. . . . Brandon D Rene Hunter scored his team’s Teddy Bear goal 19 seconds into the game. . . .

In Edmonton, the Oil Kings went 4-for-6 on the PP and beat the Lethbridge Hurricanes, 7-3. . . . These teams have played three times since Nov. 29, with the Oil Kings going 3-0. . . . F Henrik Samuelsson scored three times for Edmonton, which led 4-1 after one period. . . . Samuelsson, who has 14 goals, will head for the U.S. national junior team’s selection camp. . . . Edmonton got a goal and two assists from F Lane Bauer, who now has eight points, including three goals, in 26 games. . . . F Mitch Moroz got his 20th goal of the season for the Oil Kings. . . . Edmonton has won eight in a row and 17 of 20. The Oil Kings (22-9-1) and Calgary Hitmen (20-7-5) lead the Eastern Conference, each with 45 points. . . .

In Cranbrook, G Patrik Bartosak turned aside 35 shots to help the Red Deer Rebels to a 4-0 victory over the Kootenay Ice. . . . He’s got two shutouts this season and eight in his career. . . . The Ice, with F Sam Reinhart and head coach Ryan McGill, in Toronto with Canada’s national junior team, went with 15 skaters. . . . F Brooks Maxwell scored twice, giving him nine, and added an assist for Red Deer, which scored twice in each of the first and third periods. . . . The Rebels (15-16-2) closed to within one point of the Ice (17-16-2), which is tied for seventh with the Prince Albert Raiders in the Eastern Conference. . . .

In Calgary, F Brady Brassart struck for three goals as the Hitmen dropped the Medicine Hat Tigers, 7-0. . . . Brassart scored three of the game’s first four goals, giving him 13 this season. . . . F Greg Chase drew an assist on each of Brassart’s goals. . . . F Calder Brooks scored twice, giving him eight, and F Jake Virtanen had the other two. He’s got 17. . . . Calgary G Chris Driedger stopped 29 shots in putting up his second shutout this season and the seventh of his career. . . . Calgary is 7-0-1 in its last eight. . . . The Hitmen had five players at plus-3, while F Alex Mowbray and F Chad Labelle of the Tigers each was minus-4. . . .

In Kennewick, Wash., F Todd Fiddler had two goals and an assist to lead the Prince George Cougars to a 5-1 victory over the Tri-City Americans. . . . Fiddler opened the scoring at 4:48 of the first period and then gave his sde a 3-1 lead at 4:44 of the second, on the PP. . . . He’s got 14 goals. . . . Since joining the Cougars, Fiddler has 23 points, 12 of them goals, in 15 games. . . . Fiddler and the Cougars play in Spokane tonight. He scored 42 goals for the Chiefs last season. . . . F Connor Rankin scored for his Americans, his 12th goal, at 1:31 of the second, serving as the Teddy Bear goal. . . . Cougars G Ty Edmonds, who was named to the Top Prospects game earlier in the day, turned aside 32 shots. Americans F Marcus Messier came up dry on a penalty shot at 11:31 of the third. . . . The Cougars were 3-for-6 on the PP. . . . Prince George (13-17-5) is six points behind the Americans (17-5-3), who hold down the Western Conference’s last playoff spot. . . . Tri-City has lost three in a row. . . . The Americans were without injured forwards Jessey Astles and Phil Tot. . . .

In Vancouver, G Jared Rathjen stopped 22 shots to lead the Giants to a 3-0 victory over the Everett Silvertips. . . . It was the first career shutout for Rathjen, a 19-year-old from Prince George, who was making his 58th WHL regular-season appearance. . . . Vancouver F Trent Lofthouse opened the scoring at 9:04 of the second. His seventh goal this season was the Teddy Bear score. . . . The Giants have climbed to seventh in the Western Conference and now have won three in a row. They are 6-1-3 in their last 10. . . . The teams meet again tonight in Everett. . . . The loss ended an Everett streak of having picked up at least one point in 11 games against Vancouver. . . . The Giants finish their weekend on Sunday against the visiting Prince George Cougars. F Tyler Benson, the first overall pick in the 2013 bantam draft, is expected to play his second game of the season with Vancouver. . . .

In Kent, Wash., the host Seattle Thunderbirds erased a 2-1 deficit and beat the Portland Winterhawks, 3-2. . . . F Chase De Leo scored twice for Portland, giving him 21 goals. . . . His second goal, at 16:01 of the second, gave the visitors a 2-1 lead. . . . Seattle F Justin Hickman tied the game at 4:46 of the third period, with F Branden Troock breaking the deadlock at 7:36, via the PP. Troock, who scored twice and added an assist, has 15 goals. . . . Seattle G Danny Mumaugh stopped 33 shots. . . . The Winterhawks are without F Oliver Bjorkstrand, F Taylor Leier, F Nic Petan, D Derrick Pouliot and D Layne Viveiros, all of whom are off to international tournaments. . . . With them gone, F Colton Veloso, who had an assist, and D Justin Greer made their WHL debuts. . . . Seattle has won eight in a row and is fourth in the Western Conference, just two points behind Everett. . . . The Thunderbirds and Winterhawks meet tonight in Portland in a Teddy Bear toss game that is sold out.

From Tim Pigulski (@tpigulski): “According to Konowalchuk, the reason Eansor switched jerseys to start the 3rd is because he threw up on himself at intermission. #guts”
The WHL scoresheet indicates that Seattle F Scott Eansor changed sweaters because of “blood on jersey.”

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