Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Raiders' family in mourning

F Sam Fioretti, the captain of the Moose Jaw Warriors, will sit for three games after being suspended under supplemental discipline. Fioretti, who has 40 points in 49 games, was disciplined after an incident during a game against the host Kootenay Ice on Saturday. . . .
F Mike Aviani of the Spokane Chiefs didn’t play Wednesday night against the Rockets in Kelowna. He is awaiting word on a suspension for a hit on D Connor Clouston of the host Kamloops Blazers during a game on Tuesday night.
When his Tri-City Americans to meet the Oil Kings in Edmonton on Friday, general manager Bob Tory will be back home. He’s from Edmonton and owns a home there; in fact, Oil Kings head coach Derek Laxdal is living in it. . . . Curtis Stock of the Edmonton Journal takes a look at Tory and what he has accomplished in the WHL right here.
The Regina Pats had three players lose considerable time to skate cuts last season. On Saturday night, they came awfully close to losing F Boston Leier, their leading sniper, to a similar injury. Greg Harder of the Regina Leader-Post has that story right here.
F Todd Fiddler has been lighting it up since joining the Prince George Cougars in November. He had one goal, his 31st, in a 10-6 victory over the host Saskatoon Blades lat night. Daniel Nugent-Bowman of the Saskatoon StarPhoenix has more on Fiddler right here.
Warren Harper, who played for the 1981-82 Centennial Cup-winning Prince Alberrt Raiders, died Wednedsay after a battle with cancer. He was 50.
From the Raiders:
“Warren passed away . . . surrounded by family and friends, including former Raiders teammates, at Prince Albert's Victoria Hospital after a long and courageous battle with cancer.
“Harper played for the Raiders from 1980-83 and is one of only a few players to play for the Raiders in both the Saskatchewan Junior and Western Hockey Leagues. He was born and raised in Prince Albert, and was drafted by the Buffalo Sabres in the 1981 NHL Entry draft.
“Harper was a member of the 1981-82 Raiders team that won the Centennial Cup, which was recently announced as one of the 2014 inductees into the Saskatchewan Hockey Hall of Fame.
Funeral arrangements are pending.”
It was a wild night in Saskatoon where the Prince George Cougars scored five goals in the first 12 minutes and went on to beat the Blades, 10-6. . . . It ended with Saskatoon D MacKenzie Johnston having to be restrained at the Cougars’ dressing room. . . . F Brad Morrison, 16, had a goal and three assists for the Cougars, who got two goals from each of F Jansen Harkins and F Zach Pochiro. . . . The Cougars scored their first five goals on seven shots. . . . Saskatoon G Nathan Alalouf, in from the junior B Osoyoos, B.C., Coyotes, made his WHL debut in relief of G Troy Trombley after Prince George’s fifth goal. Alalouf, who is replacing the injured Alex Moodie, gave up two goals on eight shots and Tremblay was back to start the second. . . . Saskatoon F Cameron Hebig came up empty on a second-period penalty shot with his side trailing 7-3. . . . Johnston was upset after Cougars F Aaron Macklin roughed up Saskatoon F Nikita Scherbak at 19:18 of the third period. . . . The Cougars (20-26-7) remain eight points out of the Western Conference’s final playoff spot. . . . The Blades (14-34-4) are 11th in the Eastern Conference. . . . Daniel Nugent-Bowman of the Saskatoon StarPhoenix was there and his report is right here. . . .

In Calgary, the Tri-City Americans scored the game’s last four goals and beat the Hitmen, 4-1. . . . F Greg Chase got Calgary on the board with his 28th goal at 1:24 of the third period. . . . Tri-City F Brian Williams, with his 30th, got his side even at 3:04 and F Braden Purtill got his eighth at 11:34. . . . Tri-City G Eric Comrie stopped 39 shots, while his younger brother, Ty, scored his third goal of the season, giving the Americans a 3-1 lead at 16:46 of the third period. . . . Williams later added an empty-netter. . . . Tri-City F Phil Tot, 20, who is from Calgary, had two assists as he played in his hometown for the final time. . . . The Americans (25-21-5) are 5-0-1 in their last six games; they are eighth in the Western Conference, three points behind the Everett Silvertips and Vancouver Giants. . . . The Hitmen (31-13-6) are second in the Central Division, three points behind the Edmonton Oil Kings. . . .

The Lethbridge Hurricanes scored the game’s last three goals and beat the visiting Prince Albert Raiders, 3-2. . . . D Josh Morrissey scored twice for the Raiders, his 16th and 17th goals giving them a 2-0 lead by 8:04 of the first period. . . . F Jamal Watson got Lethbridge on the board at 13:14 of the first, on the PP. He’s got 13 goals. . . . F Taylor Cooper, with his 10th, got the Hurricanes even at 16:48 of the second and F Brady Ramsay, with his 12th, won it at 13:25 of the third. . . . Lethbridge G Jonny Hogue turned aside 41 shots for his first WHL victory. . . . According to Jeff D’Andrea of, the Raiders are 6-15-1 since Dec. 1, while the Hurricanes are 7-17-1. . . . The Raiders, who are 2-7-1 in their last 10, are ninth in the Eastern Conference, five points out of a playoff spot. . . . The Hurricanes (10-38-5), who had lost eight straight, are last in the conference. . . .

In Medicine Hat, the Tigers opened up a 5-0 lead in the second period and went on to a 6-2 victory over the Kootenay Ice. . . . The Tigers were 3-for-4 on the PP. . . . F Trevor Cox had a goal, his 15th, and two assists for Medicine Hat, while D Tyler Lewington drew three assists. . . . Among the Ice’s scratches was F Jaeden Descheneau, who has an undisclosed injury. . . . Tigers F Curtis Valk picked up a goal to run his goal-scoring streak to eight games. That’s two games longer than anyone else in the WHL this season. . . . Ice F Luke Philp scored once as he ran his point streak to 11 games, the longest ongoing streak in the WHL. . . . The Tigers (29-17-3) are fourth in the Eastern Conference, three points behind the Calgary Hitmen and three ahead of the Swift Current Broncos. . . . The Ice (25-21-4) is eighth in the conference, five points ahead of Prince Albert and one behind the Regina Pats. . . .

F Brooks Maxwell of the Red Deer Rebels ended a seven-round shootout and gave his guys a 4-3 victory over the Brandon Wheat Kings. . . . Brandon F Peter Quenneville had forced OT with his 16th goal at 18:18 of the third period. . . . Brandon is 0-1-1 as it plays four games in five nights on an Alberta tour. . . . Brandon F Rihards Bukarts was tossed with a kneeing major at 13:13 of the first period. He had scored his 19th goal of the season at 6:43. . . . Red Deer G Patrik Bartosak stopped 39 shots. . . . Brandon F Kord Pankewicz didn’t play again after a first-period scrap with Red Deer F Evan Polei. . . . The Rebels (27-21-2) have won five in a row and are sixth in the Eastern Conference, two points behind Swift Current and one ahead of Regina. . . . The Wheat Kings (26-18-6) used the loser point to pull into a tie with the Broncos atop the East Division. . . .

F Paul Bittner had two goals and two assists to help the host Portland Winterhawks to an 8-1 victory over the Everett Silvertips. . . . It was the third meeting between these teams in the last six days, with Portland going 3-0-0 (5-1 and 8-1 at home; 6-2 in Everett). . . . Bittner, who has 14 points in his last seven games, scored his side’s first two goals, breaking a 1-1 tie at 13:20 of the first period with his 16th goal. . . . Portland D Garrett Haar and D Mathew Dumba each had two assists and was plus-4. . . . Portland F Brendan Leipsic scored his 30th goal of the season. . . . The Winterhawks have won eight straight games. . . . Everett, which was 1-for-9 on the PP, has lost a season-high five in a row. . . . The Winter hawks (34-12-5) are 9-0-1 in their last 10; they are atop the U.S. Division, six points ahead of the Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . Everett (25-18-8) is tied with the Vancouver Giants for sixth in the Western Conference, eight points behind the Spokane Chiefs. . . .

At Vancouver, F Dalton Sward had two goals and an assist as the Giants beat the Kamloops Blazers, 4-3. . . . Sward has 15 goals. . . . The Giants, who are 6-0-0 versus Kamloops this season, opened up a 3-0 lead in the first period, only to have the Blazers get two goals from F Cole Ully, who has 22. . . . Sward then restored the two-goal lead, only to have Kamloops F Collin Shirley get his eighth at 13:40 of the third. . . . Vancouver F Cain Franson iced it with his 18th goal at 14:49. . . . Vancouver F Travis McEvoy came up empty on a first-period penalty shot. . . . Kamloops G Cole Kehler, 16, stopped 26 shots, 10 more than Vancouver’s Payton Lee. . . . Vancouver was without D Dalton Thrower (ankle) and F Trent Lofthouse (undisclosed). As well, a flu bug has been making its way through the room and it kept D Brett Kulak, F Luca Leone and F Ty Ronning out of the lineup. . . . The Giants had F Tyler Benson, the first pick in the 2013 bantam draft, in the lineup for his third game this season. He has 72 points in 37 games at the Pursuit of Excellence in Kelowna. . . . Vancouver also dressed D Ryely McKinstry, who was the 23rd overall selection in the 2014 draft. McKinstry, who has 20 points in 28 games with the midget AAA Calgary Buffaloes, made his WHL debut. . . . The Blazers, who lost D Sam Grist and D Connor Clouston to undisclosed injuries on Tuesday, had D Cameron Reagan, 16, and F Quinn Benjafield, who turns 16 on Feb. 2, make their WHL debuts. Also added to the roster was F Deven Sideroff, 16, who played his third game this season. . . . The Giants (25-19-8) are tied with Everett for sixth in the Western Conference. . . . The Blazers (11-35-5) have lost four in a row as they prepare to go home and home with the Kelowna Rockets this weekend. . . .

In Kelowna, the Spokane Chiefs scored the last three goals of regulation time and then scored the lone goal of a six-round shootout to beat the Rockets, 6-5. . . . Kelowna had one nine in a row at home. . . . Spokane D Reid Gow scored the first and last goals of regulation time, his fourth goal of the season, on the PP at 15:24 of the third period, forcing OT. . . . Chiefs D Jason Fram scored the only goal of the skills competition. . . . Spokane F Mitch Holmberg, who leads the WHL points derby, had a goal and two assists. He leads the WHL in goals (46) and points (90). . . . Spokane F Adam Helewka had three assists. . . . F Ryan Olsen and D Damon Severson each had a goal and two assists for Kelowna. . . . Attendance was 4,628. . . . The Rockets (40-7-3) are atop the overall standings, 12 points ahead of the Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . The Chiefs (31-15-4) are fifth in the Western Conference, one point behind the Seattle Thunderbirds and two behind the Victoria Royals.

From the Saskatoon Blades (@bladeshockey): “FACT: (Last night’s) Blades-Cougars game featured former @bladeshockey turned coaches: Struch/Leschshyn/Engele vs. Holick/Becker. #BleedBlue”

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