Saturday, November 5, 2016

WHL comes down on Cougars . . . Changes to Team WHL . . . Pats' offence really on fire

The Prince George Cougars got hit with suspensions totalling 11 games and fines totalling $1,500 for silliness that occurred at the end of a 6-4 loss to the visiting Medicine Hat Tigers on Wednesday night. . . . D Sam Ruopp, the team captain, drew an eight-game suspension for engaging in what was a one-man fight “with an unsuspecting opponent.” That opponent was F Steve Owre of the Tigers. Eight games is believed to be the longest suspension handed out by the WHL since April 11, 2014, when Victoria F Brandon Magee got 12 games after being hit with a match penalty — he twice cross-checked opponents in the head — during a playoff game with the Portland Winterhawks. . . . F Kody McDonald got three games for a slashing major and game misconduct that he took as the game ended. He viciously hacked at Medicine Hat F Chad Butcher at a faceoff. . . . The Cougars were fined $1,000 and head coach Richard Matvichuk got touched for $500 “for actions of players at end of game,” according to the WHL.
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The WHL has scratched F Dillon Dube of the Kelowna Rockets, F Brett Howden of the Moose Jaw Warriors and F Nolan Patrick of the Brandon Wheat Kings from the team that will meet a touring Russian side next week in Prince George (Monday) and Edmonton (Tuesday). . . . All three veterans are out with injuries. . . . Added to Team WHL’s roster were F Brad Morrison (Prince George Cougars), F Lane Pederson (Swift Current Broncos) and F Mason Shaw (Medicine Hat Tigers). . . . For whatever reason, the pooh-bahs have chosen to snub Matt Phillips of the Victoria Royals, who may be the best forward in the WHL. . . . Patrick, the consensus No. 1 selection in the NHL’s 2017 NHL draft, hasn’t played since Oct. 11 and has skated in only six of Brandon’s 16 games. He has sports hernia surgery in July and missed most of training camp.
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F Ethan Leyh of Anmore, B.C., has committed to attend the U of Wisconsin where he will play for the Badgers. Leyh, 15, was an eighth-round selection by the Spokane Chiefs in the 2016 WHL bantam draft. He is playing for the major midget Vancouver-North East Chiefs. Leynh had 13 points, including eight goals, in six games going into the weekend.
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FRIDAY’S GAMES:


At Brandon, D Kale Clague’s third goal of the season broke a 2-2 tie at 9:57 of the third period and the
KALE CLAGUE
Wheat Kings beat the Seattle Thunderbirds, 3-2. . . . This was a rematch of last season’s championship final, which the Wheat Kings won in five games. . . . Last night, F Ty Lewis got Brandon on the board with his ninth goal, at 8:51 of the first period. . . . Seattle took the lead with two third-period goals, F Nolan Volcan scoring his sixth just 28 seconds in, and D Turner Ottenbreit getting his second, on a PP, at 1:51. . . . Brandon F Stelio Mattheos, with his seventh, forced OT at 3:48 of the third. Clague drew the primary assist on the goal. . . . Brandon G Jordan Papirny stopped 36 shots, nine more than Rylan Toth of Seattle. . . . Seattle was 1-10 on the PP; Brandon was 0-4. . . . The Wheat Kings (7-6-3) had lost their previous four games (0-4-1). . . . The Thunderbirds (6-7-1) had won two in a row. They are 3-2-0 on their East Division trip. . . . Seattle lost D Ethan Bear with a spearing major and game misconduct at 8:28 of the first period. Chances are that he will be suspended at least for tonight’s game against the Warriors in Moose Jaw. . . . Announced attendance: 3,640.
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At Kamloops, F Deven Sideroff scored once and drew three assists to lead the Blazers to a 5-2 victory
DEVEN SIDEROFF
over the Medicine Hat Tigers. . . . Sideroff has 10 goals and seven assists in 17 games. . . . The Blazers took control of a 0-0 game with two second-period goals and one early in the third. Sideroff got the game’s first score, at 5:54 of the second, with F Collin Shirley making it 2-0 at 9:04. His eighth goal came via the PP. . . . Kamloops D Ondrej Vala’s fourth goal, at 7:03 of the third period, turned out to be the winner. . . . D Dylan MacPherson got his first goal, at 11:49, to get the Tigers to within two, but Kamloops F Rudolfs Balcers put it away with two goals, giving him nine. . . . F Mark Rassell later scored his 11th for the Tigers. . . . Balcers added an assist to his goals, while F Nick Chyzowski and F Garrett Pilon each had two helpers. . . . The line of Pilon between Sideroff and Balcers totalled nine points. . . . Kamloops G Connor Ingram, who went into the game first in the WHL in save percentage (.936) and second in GAA (2.01) stopped 36 shots. He really was sharp again, this time with Hockey Canada goaltending consultant Fred Brathwaite looking on. . . . The Tigers got 38 saves from G Duncan McGovern. . . . The Blazers (10-8-1) are 2-0-1 in their last three outings. . . . The Tigers (11-5-1) have won their previous three games, all on the road. . . . The Blazers had beaten the Tigers 5-1 in Medicine Hat on Oct. 8. . . . The Tigers were 1-2 on the PP; the Blazers were 1-4. . . . Kamloops was without three injured veteran defencemen — Dawson Davidson, Shaun Dosanjh and Dallas Valentine. . . . The Blazers added D Tylor Ludwar, 17, to their roster for this game — he acquitted himself quite well — and Saturday’s in Prince George. A native of Regina, he has eight points, including five goals, in six games with the midget AAA Regina Pat Canadians. . . . Announced attendance: 3,749, the second-largest crowd this season.
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At Moose Jaw, F Tanner Jeannot broke a 1-1 tie at 4:12 of the third period as the Warriors beat the Edmonton Oil Kings, 3-1. . . . Jeannot has five goals. . . . F Noah Gregor gave the home side a 1-0 lead at 17:10 of the first period, with his sixth goal, on a PP. . . . Edmonton F Davis Koch got his fourth goal, on a PP, at 16:01 of the second period. . . . The Warriors got an insurance goal from F Ryan Bowen, his fifth, at 8:38 of the third. . . . F Nikita Popugaev had two assists for the Warriors. . . . G Zach Sawchenko had another strong game for the Warriors, with 36 saves. . . . The Oil Kings got 22 stops from Patrick Dea. . . . Edmonton was 1-3 on the PP; Moose Jaw was 1-4. . . . The Warriors (11-3-2) have won four straight. . . . Edmonton now is 5-9-2. . . . F Tate Popple, 16, made his WHL debut with the Warriors. From Brandon, Popple has 18 points, including 10 goals, in 11 games with the midget AAA Wheat Kings. . . . Announced attendance: 3,019.
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At Prince Albert, G Ian Scott stopped 22 shots to earn the shutout as the Raiders beat the Kootenay Ice,
IAN SCOTT
6-0. . . . It was Scott’s first shutout this season and the second of his career. . . . The game featured the two teams with the league’s poorest records. As a result of the outcome, the Raiders (5-11-1), who had lost their previous four games, moved a point ahead of the Ice (3-10-4), which has lost two straight. . . . F Tim Vanstone scored the game’s first goal, his fourth, at 9:35 of the first period. . . . F Sean Montgomery, scored twice, giving him five goals, with F Cavin Leth (2), F Cole Fonstad (2) and F Adam Kadlec (2) adding one each. . . . F Simon Stransky had two assists, with Vanstone adding one. . . . Ice G Payton Lee stopped 33 shots. . . . The Raiders were 2-4 on the PP; the Ice was 0-3. . . . The Raiders scratched F Luke Coleman with an undisclosed injury. He has been hot, too, having scored three of the team’s last six goals going into this game. . . . Announced attendance: 2,109.
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At Regina, the Pats scored six first-period goals, including two shorthanded scores on the same penalty kill, en route to a 9-6 victory over the Saskatoon Blades. . . . Regina (12-0-3) has won eight in a row, the franchise’s longest winning streak since it won nine straight in 2001-02. . . . The Pats, the WHL’s highest-scoring team, were coming off a 10-goal game, having beaten the visiting Kootenay Ice, 10-2, on Wednesday. . . . The Blades (7-9-1) have lost two in a row. . . . The Pats came out of the first period with a 6-2 lead, with F Sam Steel in on three of those goals. He had two goals, giving him 14, and a league-high 28 points. . . . The Blades got to within two, at 6-4, on second-period goals from F Michael Farren (3) and F Gage Ramsey (2). . . . Regina F Filip Ahl’s 10th goal, on a PP at 15:57, gave his guys a three-goal lead. . . . F Logan Christensen (4) scored for Saskatoon, on a PP, at 17:52. . . . Regina put it away with third-period goals from Ahl, on a PP, at 4:15, and F Adam Brooks (6) at 7:29. . . . Saskatoon F Caleb Fantillo closed out the scoring with his first goal at 16:22. . . . F Jake Leschyshyn scored his ninth goal and had three assists for Regina, with D Chase Harrison scoring his third goal and adding one assist and F Austin Wagner getting No. 3 and an assist. . . . Ahl ended up with the winner, his WHL-leading fifth, while Wagner now has a league-leading four shorthanded goals. . . . Brooks added three assists to his goal, with D Connor Hobbs also getting three assists. . . . Fantillo also had an assist, while D Nolan Reid had two of them. . . . G Tyler Brown turned aside 34 shots for Regina. . . . Saskatoon starter Brock Hamm gave up six goals on 17 shots in the first period. Logan Flodell played the last two periods, stopping 27 of 30 shots. . . . Regina was 4-8 on the PP; Saskatoon was 1-6. . . . Regina took 78 of the game’s 155 penalty minutes. Ch-ch-ching! There was a line brawl at 17:11 of the third period that resulted in 107 penalty minutes. . . . The teams don’t play each other again until Dec. 10 in Regina. . . . Announced attendance: 5,658.
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At Spokane, F Michael Spacek’s 10th goal, on a PP at 4:31 of OT, gave the Red Deer Rebels a 4-3 victory over the Chiefs. . . . Red Deer held 2-0 and 3-2 leads before Spokane F Kailer Yamamoto forced extra time with his 11th goal at 16:32 of the third period. . . . Two Rebels — F Jordan Roy and D Ethan Sakowich — scored their first goals to give the visitors a 2-0 lead after one period. . . . Spokane tied it on goals from F Hudson Elynuik (5) and F Keanu Yamamoto (4), the former at 4:32 of the second and the latter 57 seconds into the third period. . . . D Austin Pratt gave Red Deer a 3-2 lead, with his sixth goal, at 7:59. . . . Spacek also had two assists. . . . The Chiefs got two assists from F Curtis Miske. . . . G Riley Lamb stopped 29 shots for the Rebels, with Jayden Sittler stopping 26 for the Chiefs. . . . The Rebels were 1-3 on the PP; the Chiefs were 0-5. . . . Red Deer (9-7-2) had lost four in a row. . . . The Chiefs (6-6-4) are 3-0-2 in their last five games. . . . Announced attendance: 4,603.
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At Swift Current, F Tyler Steenbergen scored at 3:53 of OT to give the Broncos a 3-2 victory over the
TYLER STEENBERGEN
Calgary Hitmen. . . . Steenbergen, who has 13 goals, including three in OT, also scored in OT on Saturday as the Broncos beat the visiting Spokane Chiefs, 3-2. . . . Steenbergen has four goals and two assists over his last three games. . . . F Carsen Twarynski, who has six goals, scored twice for Calgary, giving it a 1-0 lead 50 seconds into the game tying the game 2-2 at 19:33 of the third period. The second one came with G Cody Porter on the bench for the extra attacker. . . . Broncos F Aleksi Heponiemi’s fifth goal pulled the Broncos into a 1-1 tie at 1:15 of the first period. . . . Broncos D Max Lajoie got his second goal, on a PP, at 15:44 of the second period. . . . F Matteo Gennaro and F Jordy Stallard each had two assists for Calgary. . . . G Travis Child earned the victory with 25 saves, three more than Porter. . . . The Broncos were 1-4 on the PP; the Hitmen were 0-3. . . . Swift Current (10-5-3) has points in three straight (2-0-1). . . . The Hitmen (5-5-2) had won their previous two games. . . . Announced attendance: 1,858.
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At Kennewick, Wash., F Michael Rasmussen scored twice and added an assist to help the Tri-City
MICHAEL RASMUSSEN
Americans to a 5-3 victory over the Portland Winterhawks. . . . Rasmussen, who has 14 goals, opened the scoring at 1:11 of the first period. . . . Portland F Ryan Hughes got his fifth goal at 4:15. . . . The Americans took control with the next three goals in a span of 5:04. F Morgan Geekie (7) scored on a PP at 11:21, Rasmussen counted at 13:34 — he’s got eight goals in four games against Portland — and F Parker AuCoin (6) got a shorthanded score at 16:25. . . . The Winterhawks got to within a goal when D Carter Czaikowski got his first goal at 12:39 of the second period and F Keegan Iverson (7) scored at 17:36. . . . Geekie got the empty-netter at 19:49. . . . G Rylan Parenteau blocked 31 shots for the Americans. . . . Tri-City D Juuso Valimaki had two assists. . . . Portland starter Cole Kehler was beaten three times on five shots in 13:34. Michael Bullion finished up with 25 saves on 26 shots in 44:51. . . . Tri-City was 1-7 on the PP; Portland was 0-5. . . . The Americans (10-6-1) have won two straight. . . . The Winterhawks (8-9-0) have lost six in a row. . . . Announced attendance: 3,909.
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At Langley, B.C., F Nick Merkley had two goals and an assist to help the Kelowna Rockets to a 6-4
NICK MERKLEY
victory over the Vancouver Giants. . . . The Rockets enjoyed 2-1 and 4-2 leads but it was a goal by F Kole Lind, his seventh, that broke a 4-4 tie at 16:50 of the third period. . . . F Alec Baer, who had two goals and an assist, gave the Giants a 1-0 lead at 6:56 of the first period. . . . Kelowna took a 2-1 lead on goals from F Calvin Thurkauf (7) and Merkley, at 10:09 and 12:46 of the first. . . . Vancouver D Darian Skeoch tied it with his first goal, at 17:15. . . . The Rockets took a 4-2 lead when F Tomas Soustal (7) and D Braydyn Chizen (1) struck for shorthanded goals just three seconds apart — yes, three seconds — at 14:15 and 14:18 of the second period. . . . Baer’s second goal, and second of the season, at 15:49 of the second cut the deficit to one, and F Johnny Wesley’s fourth goal, at 8:42 of the third period, tied it. . . . Merkley got the empty-netter at 18:44. . . . The WHL record for quickest two goals is two seconds. F Pavel Brendl and F Brad Moran set that record with the Calgary Hitmen on Oct. 3, 1998. Brendl’s goal came into an empty net as the Hitmen beat the Red Deer Rebels, 6-4. . . . Soustal and Thurkauf each had two assists. . . . F James Malm had two assists for Vancouver. . . . G Michael Herringer stopped 30 shots for the victory. . . . The Giants got 31 stops from Ryan Kubic. . . . Kelowna was 2-4 on the PP; Vancouver was 0-5. . . . The Rockets improved to 10-8-0, while the Giants are 7-11-0. . . . Announced attendance: 4,286. . . . Steve Ewen of the Vancouver Province reports that Curtis Hunt, the Prince Albert Raiders’ general manager, was in the building.
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At Victoria, F Kaid Oliver’s goal ended an 11-round shootout and gave the Royals a 3-2 victory over the Lethbridge Hurricanes. . . . Victoria F Jack Walker scored two goals, at 1:39 and 18:46 of the first period. He’s got 10 goals. . . . Lethbridge got two goals from F Jesse Zaharichuk, who has eight, at 13:55 of the second period and 16:27 of the third. . . . The Royals scored four times in the shootout, with the Hurricanes getting three. . . . Kaid, a 16-year-old from White Rock, B.C., has one goal and one assist in 19 games. . . . Victoria G Griffen Outhouse stopped 36 shots. . . . Lethbridge G Stuart Skinner turned aside 25 shots. That included stopping Victoria F Matt Phillips on a penalty shot at 1:23 of OT. . . . The Royals were 1-3 on the PP; the Hurricanes were 0-1. . . . Victoria (10-7-2) is 2-0-2 in its last four games. . . . Lethbridge (7-7-3) had won its previous two games. . . . Announced attendance: 4,494.
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LEADERS

POINTS: F Sam Steel, Regina, 28; F Mason Shaw, Medicine Hat, 27; F Kailer Yamamoto, Spokane, F Nikita Popugaev, Moose Jaw, F Cody Glass, Portland, each 24.
GOALS: Steel, F Michael Rasmussen, Tri-City, each 14; F Tyler Steenbergen, Swift Current, 13; F Zak Zborosky, Kootenay, 12; Yamamoto, 11.
ASSISTS: Shaw, 22; F Brayden Burke, Lethbridge, 18; F Chad Butcher, Medicine Hat, Glass, each 17; D Chase Harrison, Regina, 16.
VICTORIES: Nick Schneider, Medicine Hat, Griffen Outhouse, Victoria, each 10; Carter Hart, Everett, Ty Edmonds, Prince George, Michael Herringer, Kelowna, each 9.
GAA: Hart, 1.89; Connor Ingram, Kamloops, 2.01; Ty Edmonds, Prince George, 2.31; Logan Flodell, Saskatoon, 2.38; Cody Porter, Calgary, 2.46.
SAVE %: Ingram, .937; Flodell, .931; Hart, .926; Logan Thompson, Brandon, .922; Outhouse, .920.
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SATURDAY’S GAMES (all times local):

Edmonton at Brandon, 7:30 p.m.
Swift Current at Calgary, 7 p.m.
Portland at Everett, 7:05 p.m.
Medicine Hat at Kelowna, 7:05 p.m.
Seattle at Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.
Kamloops at Prince George, 7 p.m.
Kootenay at Saskatoon, 7:05 p.m.
Tri-City at Spokane, 7:05 p.m.
Lethbridge vs. Vancouver, at Langley, B.C., 7 p.m.

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