Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Rockets grab Scotty Munro Memorial Trophy

Canadian Olympic team veteran Hayley Wickenheiser has sent her
best wishes to Kootenay Ice F Tim Bozon, who remains in Royal
University Hospital in Saskatoon battling meningitis.
F Brett Breitkreuz (Kelowna, Edmonton, Vancouver, 2006-10) has signed a one-year extension with Augsburger Panther (Germany, DEL). In 52 games this season, he had six goals and six assists.
You may recall a few weeks back when The MacBeth Report brought news of two former WHLers, Tyler Mosienko and Kirill Starkov, who were playing in Denmark and found themselves caught up in a gambling scandal. . . . Well, disciplinary measures have been handed down and details are right here. . . . Mosienko now is with the ECHL’s Alaska Aces and, in fact, has nine points in 12 games.
BCHLThe Chilliwack Chiefs without Harvey Smyl? That's like eggs without bacon, like a hot dog without mustard, like Christmas without Santa Claus. But that will be the case next season as the Chiefs announced Wednesday evening that Smyl is stepping down as general manager and head coach of the BCHL franchise. Smyl has been with the Chiefs through 21 seasons. According to a Chiefs' news release, "Smyl informed Chiefs’ President Glen Ringdal on Tuesday that he will not renew his contract which expires at the end of May, but instead will pursue new directions and interests." . . . The Chiefs made the playoffs in 20 of Smyl's 21 seasons there. He is a four-time winner of the BCHL's coach-of-the-year award.
SJHLThe Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League has a Hall of Fame and has announced its Class of 2014.
Inductions will take place July 25 as part of SJHL Hall of Fame Weekend in Melfort. Included in the festivities will be a dinner and, yes, a golf tournament.
Going into the Hall of Fame this time will be former Melfort Mustangs head coach Kevin Dickie, former on-ice official Brad Meier, former Melfort D Willie Mitchell, Brian Munz, a one-time radio voice of Humboldt Broncos, Nipawin Hawks and Melfort, former SJHL player and coach Mark Odnokon, former G Rick Schultz, who now is chairman of the SJHL’s board of directors, Neil Shewchuk, who did play-by-play in the SJHL for 20 years, long-time SJHL general manager and executive Leonard Strandberg and the 1995-96 Melfort Mustangs.
For more, check out Benny Walchuk’s blog, Walchuk’s World, right here.
Meanwhile, the Saskatchewan Hockey Hall of Fame announced its 2014 inductees in January. I was away and missed it, so here they are:
Players -- Brian Propp, Brad McCrimmon, Johnny Gottselig, Jim Neilson
Builders -- Terry Simpson, Wayne Kartusch, Emile Francis
Official -- Wes Smith
Grassroots -- Bruce Clements
Teams -- 1982 Prince Albert Raiders, 1972 Rosetown Redwings
There is more right here.
The WHL doesn't have a Hall of Fame. Sadly . . .
Prior to Wednesday's home game, the Regina Pats saluted four long-time volunteers as Builders of the organization. Off-ice officials Gary Renner and Bill White, Dr. Ian Hill and Dr. Ralph Berdan join Graham Tuer, Lorne Davis, Bob Turner, Del Wilson, Gord Staseson and Al Ritchie as honoured Builders. . . . Renner was a member of the team's off-ice crew for 44 years, while White was there for 42 years. . . . Dr. Hill was the club's doctor for 45 years before retiring last season. Dr. Berdan has been the team dentist for 35 years, although he is stepping aside after this season.
In hockey season, among other things, Steve Ewen covers the Vancouver Giants for the Vancouver Province. In the summer, you can find him at Scotiabank Field at Nat Bailey Stadium covering the Vancouver Canadians. . . . On Wednesday, the Canadians announced that they will induct Ewen into their Broadcast and Journalism Hall of Fame on Aug. 30. Being enshrined with Ewen will be broadcaster Bob Robertson. . . . Ewen has covered the Canadians for 14 seasons and has covered all six of their Northwest League playoff runs.

The City of Lethbridge has a water problem brought on by turbidity and has declared a state of emergency. One of the things the city has done is shut down all of its arenas. The Hurricanes are scheduled to play host to the Medicine Hat Tigers on Friday; an announcement is expected to be made sometime today as to whether that game will go ahead at the Enmax Centre. . . .
The Brandon Wheat Kings are fighting for their playoff lives and may get some help in time for their next game. The Wheat Kings are to play the Pats in Regina on Friday and Brandon may have F Peter Quenneville back in their lineup. Quenneville, who has 45 points, including 16 goals, in 42 games, hasn’t played since Feb. 17, but took part in a full practice on Wednesday. . . . F Jens Meilleur, a fourth-year skater who has been out since Feb. 26, was on the ice in a non-contact sweater. . . .
The Saskatoon Blades will win fewer than 20 games for the sixth time in franchise history. . . . Daniel Nugent-Bowman of the Saskatoon StarPhoenix provides a pretty good look right here at what it was like on a Blades team that won only seven games.
Eastern Conference
Edmonton (1) vs. Brandon (8)
Regina (2) vs. Red Deer (7)
Calgary (3) vs. Swift Current (6)
Medicine Hat (4) vs. Kootenay (5)
(NOTE: A tie for a conference‘s final playoff spot will result in a tiebreaker game. Prince Albert is two points behind Red Deer and Brandon; each of the three teams has two games remaining.)
Western Conference
Kelowna (1) vs. Tri-City (8)
Portland (2) vs. Vancouver (7)
Victoria (3) vs. Everett (6)
Seattle (4) vs. Spokane (5)
(NOTE: Kelowna-Tri-City and Portland-Vancouver are locked in as first-round series.)
THURSDAY’S WHL GAMES (all times local):
No games scheduled.
FRIDAY’S WHL GAMES (all times local):
Calgary at Kootenay, 7 p.m.
Medicine Hat at Lethbridge, 7 p.m.
Saskatoon at Prince Albert, 7 p.m.
Brandon at Regina, 7 p.m.
Moose Jaw at Swift Current, 7 p.m.
Prince George at Kamloops, 7 p.m.
Tri-City at Spokane, 7:05 p.m.
Everett at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.
Kelowna at Vancouver, 7:30 p.m.
Portland at Seattle, 7:35 p.m.
In Medicine Hat, the Edmonton Oil Kings moved back into sole possession of first place in the Eastern Conference with a 3-1 victory over the Tigers. . . . F Luke Bertolucci, with his sixth, in the first period, and D Griffin Reinhart, with his fourth, at 1:04 of the second on a PP, gave the visitors a 2-0 lead. . . . Tigers F Cole Sanford got his guys within one when he scored his 31st at 16:15 of the second. . . . Edmonton F Edgars Kulda added insurance with his 29th, into an empty net, at 19:57 of the third. . . . Edmonton G Tristan Jarry stopped 30 shots, five fewer than Medicine Hat's Marek Langhamer. . . . Edmonton F Reid Petryk was helped off the ice in the third period. Darren Steinke of the Medicine Hat News tweeted that Petryk appeared unable to put any weight on his left leg, but that he seemed OK after the game. . . . Tigers D Dylan Bredo played in his 288th consecutive regular-season game, which ties him for fourth with F Steve Kuhn, who played for the Spokane Chiefs, in the WHL record book. F Justin Feser, who played for the Tri-City Americans, holds the WHL record (321). . . . Steinke has a story on Bredo and his accomplishment right here. . . . The Oil Kings (49-18-3) have 101 points, the third straight season in which they surpassed 100. They need one victory or a Calgary Hitmen loss in regulation to wrap up first place in the Eastern Conference for a third straight season. . . . The Tigers (42-24-4) will finish fourth in the conference and will play the Kootenay Ice or Swift Current Broncos in the first round. . . .

In Red Deer, G Patrik Bartosak stopped 46 shots to lead the Rebels to a 3-2 victory over the Kootenay Ice. . . . Rebels D Nick Charif gave his guys a 2-0 lead with this third goal at 6:04 of the second period. . . . Ice F Jaedon Descheneau scored his 43rd just 53 seconds later. . . . Red Deer F Scott Feser upped the lead to 3-1 with this 14th at 16:04 of the third. . . . F Sam Reinhart had two assists for the Ice as he closed to within one of the franchise record for assists in one season. F Jarrett Stoll holds the record of 66 from 2000-01. Reinhart has 99 points this season; Stoll is the last Kootenay player to reach 100 points; he had 106 in 2000-01. . . . Red Deer F Wyatt Johnson drew two assists. . . . The Ice again dressed 16 skaters, two under the maximum. They remain without D Landon Cross and D Landon Peel. . . . Red Deer (34-31-5) is tied with the Brandon Wheat Kings for seventh in the Eastern Conference. Red Deer holds the edge in the tiebreaker, with a 34-32 edge in victories. . . . The Ice (39-27-4) is fifth in the conference, one point ahead of Swift Current. . . .

In Regina, F Dyson Stevenson and F Connor Gay each scored twice as the Pats dumped the Prince Albert Raiders, 7-1. . . . Stevenson has 38 goals, while Gay now has 17. . . . Regina F Morgan Klimchuk scored his 30th goal, a shorthanded effort, while F Dryden Hunt got his 20th. . . . Pats F Chandler Stephenson scored his 20th goal at 17:46 of the second period. It was his eighth shorthanded goal this season. . . . Regina has scored a WHL-leading 17 shorthanded goals, but its penalty killing is ranked 20th. . . . Stephenson also had three assists. . . . (I only hope Chandler's nickname is PH and Dyson answers to V.) . . . Raiders F Collin Valcourt scored the game's first goal, his 25th, but his side then gave up seven. . . . Regina G Dawson MacAuley stopped 28 shots. . . . Regina D Isaac Schacher was pointless but finished plus-4. . . . Regina (39-25-6) hasn’t won 40 games since 2007-08 when it last finished atop the East Division. With two games to play, the Pats lead the division by three points over Swift Current. Each team has two games remaining. . . . The Raiders (33-32-5), who have lost their last two games, slid into ninth place in the Eastern Conference, two points out of a playoff spot. They have two games remaining. . . .

In Swift Current, F Colby Cave broke a 5-5 tie with 20.9 seconds left in the third period as the Broncos beat the Saskatoon Blades, 6-5. . . . Cave's 32nd goal came 1:03 after Saskatoon D Jordan Thomson went off for holding, only the game's fifth minor penalty. . . . F Graham Black had a goal, his 34th, and three assists for the Broncos. . . . Saskatoon led 3-0 before the game was 12 minutes old and drove G Eetu Laurikainen to the bench in the process. Landon Bow came on to stop 15 of 18 shots. . . . Saskatoon D MacKenzie Johnston, a 20-yer-old playing in his hometown for the last time, gave the Blades a 4-1 lead with his fourth goal 24 seconds into the second period. . . . After goals from F Jay Merkley, his 31st, and F Glenn Gawdin, his ninth, Black tied it at 9:44 of the second. . . . F Jake DeBrusk, who had two assists, gave the Broncos the lead with his 15th goal at 11:10. . . . Saskatoon F Cory Millette tied it with his 16th just 10 seconds into the third. . . . F Ryan Graham scored twice for the Blades, giving him 15 on the season. . . . Saskatoon G Brandon Kegler stopped 39 shots. . . . The Broncos (36-25-9) are sixth in the Eastern Conference, one point behind the Kootenay Ice. Swift Current also is three points behind Regina in the race for first in the East Division. . . . The Blades (16-49-5) have lost 10 in a row. . . .

In Kamloops, the Kelowna Rockets clinched first place in the overall standings, beating the Blazers, 4-1. . . . The Rockets now have won the Scotty Munro Memorial Trophy on three occasions. . . . F Ryan Olsen scored twice for the Rockets, getting his 30th of the season into an empty net. . . . Kamloops G Bolton Pouliot was terrific in making 40 saves. . . . Kelowna F Tyrell Goulborne gave his side a 3-1 lead with his 17th goal at 16:13 of the third period. . . . Kamloops F Eric Krienke had scored his third goal at 11:34, giving the Blazers at least faint hope. . . . Kelowna F Nick Merkely scored his 24th goal, one shy of the franchise record for most goals in a season by a 16-year-old. F Shane McColgan, now with the BCHL's Penticton Vees, scored 25 times in 2009-10. . . . Kelowna G Jackson Whistle made 18 saves. He was sharp despite not being tested nearly as often as Pouliot. . . . Kelowna (55-11-4) will meet the Tri-City Americans (28-32-9) in a first-round series. . . . The Blazers (13-52-5) have lost eight in a row. . . .

In Vancouver, F Trent Lofthouse scored two goals to help the Giants to a 3-2 victory over the Victoria Royals. . . . The loss ended Victoria’s six-game winning streak. . . . Vancouver G Payton Lee stopped 41 shots, including 21 in a scoreless first period. . . . Lofthouse, who played nine games with Victoria last season and 11 this season, broke a 1-1 tie with his 11th goal, on the PP, at 15:39 of the second period. . . . He upped the home team’s lead to 3-1 with another PP goal, this one at 15:23 of the third. . . . Victoria F Steven Hodges scored his 20th goal at 1:13 of the second period. . . . Victoria F Austin Carroll got his 34th at 17:18 of the third, via the PP, to make things interesting. . . . Lofthouse, a 19-year-old from Surrey, B.C., joined the Giants with 15 goals in 112 regular-season games. In 34 games with Vancouver, he has scored 11 times. . . . Vancouver G Coleman Vollrath stopped 20 shots. . . . Vancouver was 2-for-3 on the PP; Victoria was 1-for-5. . . . Vancouver F Brendan Holterhus, who will turn 17 on March 24, made his WHL debut. A list player, he is from Edmonton where he spent the season with the midget AAA CAC Canadians. . . . The Giants (32-27-11) will finish seventh in the Western Conference and meet the Portland Winterhawks in the first round. . . . The Royals (48-18-4) will finish third and will meet either the Seattle Thunderbirds, Spokane Chiefs or Everett Silvertips in the opening round. . . .

In Spokane, the Everett Silvertips beat the Chiefs 4-2, giving them their first victory in Spokane in 19 tries. . . . Going into the game, F Josh Winquist was the only player on Everett's roster who knew what it was like for the Silvertips to win in Spokane. . . . Everett last won in Spokane on Feb. 24, 2010. Since then, it was 16-0-2. . . . Winquist scored twice, giving him 45 goals this season. He tied the game 2-2 at 12:27 of the second and then broke the tie at 19:55, on a PP. . . . Winquist drew an assist on F Carson Stadnyk’s second goal of the game, and 22nd of the season, at 16:04 of the third. . . . Spokane F Mitch Holmberg got his WHL-leading 61st goal; it was the 186th of his career, tying F Pat Falloon for the franchise’s career record. . . . Holmberg also had an assist, running his WHL-leading point total to 116. He holds a seven-point edge over Portland Winterhawks F Nic Petan. . . . Everett (37-23-9) is 9-0-1 in its last 10. It is sixth in the Western Conference, one point behind the Chiefs (39-25-6) and three in arrears of the Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . The Chiefs, who had a three-game winning streak snapped, have two games left; Everett and Seattle have yet to play three games.

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