Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Injury bug bites Giants . . . A scout's coldest rinks . . . Weatherill hot in Kent


Our countdown to the big day continues with . . . John Lennon and Happy Xmas (War Is Over). . . . It’s right here.
The Calgary Hitmen put together their annual Christmas video and this time they brought in some help from their front office. It’s fun and it’s right here.
F Ashton Rome (Moose Jaw, Red Deer, Kamloops, 2002-06) has been released by the Iserlohn Roosters (Germany, DEL). He had three goals in nine games.
Three WHL players were released from the Canadian national junior team’s selection camp following a 3-0 victory over a team of Canadian university all-stars in Boisbriand, Que., on Tuesday afternoon.
F Brett Howden of the Moose Jaw Warriors, who scored one of Team Canada’s goals and was chosen as the game’s first star, F Nick Merkley of the Kelowna Rockets and F Austin Wagner of the Regina Pats were sent home after the game.
Team Canada now has 27 players on its roster — three goaltenders, nine defencemen and 15 forwards — with five cuts still to come.
Still on the roster are goaltenders Carter Hart of the Everett Silvertips and Connor Ingram of the Kamloops Blazers. Observers seem to think that Hart has a leg up on the No. 1 spot, with Ingram and Michael McNiven of the OHL’s Owen Sound Attack in competition for the other spot. Ingram and McNiven are likely to split the goaltending duties tonight against the Czechs.
Other WHLers still on the roster are F Mathew Barzal (Seattle Thunderbirds), D Jake Bean (Calgary Hitmen), D Kale Clague (Brandon Wheat Kings), F Dillon Dube (Kelowna), D Noah Juulsen (Everett) and F Sam Steel (Regina).
Yesterday, Hart made four saves as he started and played the first 30 minutes. Ingram came on to play the second half and turned aside 11 shots. McNiven, playing for the U Sports side, blocked 24 shots.
Two of the three goal scorers — Howden and Victor Mete of the OHL’s London Knights — were released after the game.
The Edmonton Oil Kings have added F Scott Atkinson, 16, to their roster for a pre-Christmas swing into Saskatchewan. Atkinson, a fifth-round pick in the 2015 WHL bantam draft, plays for the Greater Vancouver Canadians of the B.C. Major Midget Hockey League. He has 14 goals and 14 assists in 20 games there. Last season, he finished with five goals and nine assists in 40 games with the Canadians. . . . Atkinson was in Edmonton’s lineup last night against the host Prince Albert Raiders.
Steve Ewen of the Vancouver Province reports that the Vancouver Giants have a handful of players who won’t play again until after the Christmas break. . . . D Darian Skeoch (ankle) was injured during a practice last week. F Tyler Popowich, F Dawson Holt and F Johnny Wesley all suffered undisclosed injuries. GM Glen Hanlon told Ewen that Holt will be out for at least three weeks, while Wesley is gone for a month or more. . . . The Giants also are without F Radovan Bondra, who is with Slovakian national junior team. . . . They also have brought in F Hunor Torzsok, 16, from the Delta Hockey Academy. Torzsok, who was born in Budapest, Hungary, is in his second season at Delta. He has five goals and six assists in 14 games with the prep team in the Canada Sport School Hockey League. . . . Ewen’s story is right here.
Mike Fraser, who scouts for the Brandon Wheat Kings out of Edmonton, also writes a weekly column for the Brandon-based Westman Journal. In his latest jottings, he discusses “my coldest scouting rink visits on the Prairies.” If you think you’ve been in a chilly arena or two, well, you may want to check this out right here.
Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet filed his latest 30 Thoughts essay on Tuesday afternoon, and he leads off with a piece that involves possible NHL interest in the League of Legends. . . . You may check it out right here.
If you’ve got a comment, some information you would like to pass along, or if you just want to say hello, feel free to contact me at greggdrinnan@gmail.com.
If you would like to donate to the cause, please visit the bottom of this post and go right ahead.


F Riley McKay of the Spokane Chiefs has been suspend for four games after becoming involved in a one-man fight during a game against the host Vancouver Giants on Saturday night. McKay has served one game. He will be eligible to return on Dec. 28 when the Chiefs play host to the Seattle Thunderbirds. . . .
F Cole Sanford has left the ECHL’s Colorado Eagles to attend the U of Alberta, where he will play with the Golden Bears. The AHL’s San Antonio Rampage had assigned him to the Eagles for whom he had seven goals and eight assists in 19 games. In 260 regular-season WHL games (2012-16), 230 with the Medicine Hat Tigers and the last 30 with the Regina Pats, the native of Vernon, B.C., put up 126 goals and 123 assists.



At Medicine Hat, D Ty Schultz scored at 2:09 of OT to give the Tigers an 8-7 — yes, 8-7! — victory over the Kelowna Rockets. . . . It was his third goal of the season. . . . The Tigers held 2-0, 4-1, 6-4 and 7-6
leads in this one. . . . Kelowna F Jake Kryski tied it 4-4 with this second goal, and 11th of the season, at 19:24 of the second period. . . . The third period featured six goals, three by each team. . . . The Tigers took a 6-4 lead on goals from F Mason Shaw (9) and D David Quenneville (17), on a PP. Shaw scored at 2:29 and Quenneville at 2:51. . . . Kelowna pulled back into a tie on goals from F Kyle Topping (6) and F Leif Mattson (3), at 6:59 and 8:20. . . . Medicine Hat F Zach Fischer, in his first game after serving a five-game suspension, got his 18th goal at 13:31. . . . Kelowna forced OT when D Braydyn Chizen (2) scored at 14:14. . . . The Tigers got a goal and three assists from F Steve Owre, who has 10 scores, while Butcher added two assists to his goal. His three-point night moved him into the WHL scoring lead with 50 points, two more than F Adam Brooks and F Sam Steel, both of the Regina Pats, and Shaw, who added an assist to his goal. . . . Quenneville also had an assist. The Tigers are 17-0-0 when he has at least one assist; they are 6-10-1 when he doesn’t. . . . F Max Gerlach had a goal, his 21st, and an assist. . . . D Clayton Kirichenko (3) also scored for the Tigers. . . . Kryski had two assists for Kelowna, giving him a four-point night, while F Kole Lind had a goal, his 18th, and three assists. D Cal Foote score once, giving him three, and added two assists, while his younger brother, F Nolan, had two assists. Chizen also had an assist. . . . G Nick Schneider stopped 28 shots for the Tigers as he put up victory No. 21, tops in the WHL. . . . Kelowna started Michael Herringer gave up six goals on 21 shots in 42:51. Reliever Brodan Salmond was beaten twice on 12 shots in 19:17. . . . Kelowna was 2-5 on the PP; Medicine Hat was 1-4. . . . Fischer had been suspended for a one-man fight. He hit F Matt Fonteyne of the Silvertips during a game in Everett on Dec. 2. . . . F Erik Gardiner made his Kelowna debut, but was pointless. Gardiner, who plays for the SJHL’s Humboldt Broncos, was acquired from the Regina Pats in a deal that had D Jonathan Smart go the other way. . . . The Rockets, playing their fifth game in seven nights, were without F Calvin Thurkauf (Switzerland), F Tomas Soustal (Czech Republic) and F Dillon Dube (Team Canada). Also missing was F Nick Merkley, who was released by Team Canada on Tuesday. As well, D Gordie Ballhorn remains out with a hand injury. . . . Medicine Hat (23-10-1) has won two in a row. . . . Kelowna (19-12-2) has lost two straight (0-1-1). . . . Announced attendance: 2,932.

At Prince Albert, F Austin Glover scored at 1:07 of OT to give the Raiders a 4-3 victory over the Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . Glover has 10 goals this season. . . . F Lane Bauer (22) gave the Oil Kings a 1-0 lead at 4:04 of the second period. . . . The Raiders took a 2-1 lead on second-period goals from D Nick Heid and F Cavin Leth (8), on a PP, at 13:47 and 19:03. . . . Heid’s first career WHL goal came in his 105th game. . . . Edmonton D Aaron Irving’s 12th goal, on a PP, tied it at 3:58 of the third period. . . . F Drew Warkentine, with his first goal, on a PP, put the Raiders oiut front again, at 6:45. . . . D Will Warm (3) pulled the visitors back into a tie at 14:37. . . . F Parker Kelly had two assists for the Raiders, while Glover had one. . . . G Ian Scott stopped 32 shots for the Raiders, seven more than Edmonton’s Patrick Dea. . . . Prince Albert was 2-6 on the PP; Edmonton was 1-3. . . . The Raiders were without D Vojtech Budik and F Simon Stransky, both of whom are with the Czech Republic’s national junior team. . . . The Raiders (7-23-2) had lost their previous four games (0-3-1). . . . The Oil Kings (14-15-3) have lost two in a row (0-1-1). . . . Announced attendance: 2,081.
At Prince George, the Cougars scored the game’s first two goals and the last two as they beat the Tri-City
Americans, 4-1. . . . F Ethan O’Rourke got the Cougars started with his first goal, on a PP, at 18:12 of the first period. . . . F Jared Bethune (10) made it 2-0, on a PP, at 18:57 of the second. . . . The Americans cut into the lead on F Morgan Geekie’s 17th goal, at 6:14 of the third period. . . . Prince George iced it on goals from F Jansen Harkins (7) and F Josh Maser (2), at 12:59 and 17:18. . . . Maser, 17, has two goals in as many games since joining the Cougars from the junior B Kamloops Storm of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League. He had seven goals and five assists in six games with the Storm. . . . Prince George got two assists from each of F Kody McDonald and D Josh Anderson. . . . Tri-City D Dalton Yorke played in his 200th regular-season game. He played the first 66 with the Kelowna Rockets and the next 100 with the Prince Albert Raiders. This was No. 34 with the Americans. . . . G Ty Edmonds earned the victory with 16 saves. . . . Tri-City G Beck Warm stopped 33 shots. . . . The Cougars were 2-7 on the PP; the Americans were 0-4. . . . The teams will meet again tonight in Prince George. . . . The Cougars (23-8-2) have won two straight. . . . The Americans (19-12-3) had been 3-0-1 in their previous four games. . . . Announced attendance: 2,357.

At Red Deer, F Deven Sideroff scored his second goal of the game on an OT breakaway; to give the
Kamloops Blazers a 4-3 victory over the Red Deer Rebels. . . . Sideroff has 19 goals in 31 games this season and three of them have come in OT. Last season, he finished with 19 goals in 63 games. . . . Goals from F Spencer Bast (6) and F Rudolfs Balcers (19) at 8:00 of the first period and 1:07 of the second gave the visitors a 2-0 lead. . . . F Cameron Hausinger (3) got Red Deer on the scoreboard at 6:14. . . . Sideroff restored the Blazers’ two-goal lead, with a PP scored, at 18:32. . . . F Austin Pratt (10) scored on a PP at 1:15 of the third period to cut Red Deer’s deficit to one. . . . F Evan Polei forced OT with his 14th goal at 18:04. . . . Balcers and Sideroff also had an assist each. . . . The Rebels got two assists from D Josh Mahura and one from Polei. . . . With G Connor Ingram (Team Canada) away, G Dylan Ferguson made his third straight start for Kamloops. He made 29 stops. It is the first time this season he has started three in a row. The Blazers are 2-0-1 in the three games, all in the Central Division. . . . The Blazers, outshot 19-3 in the third period, were playing their third game in four nights. . . . Red Deer G Lasse Petersen stopped 29 shots. . . . Red Deer was 1-4 on the PP; Kamloops was 1-6. . . . F Nic Holowko, 19, was pointless in his debut with the Blazers. He was acquired Sunday from the Prince Albert Raiders. . . . The Rebels were without F Michael Spacek and F Adam Musil, both of whom are with the Czech Republic’s national junior team, while Kamloops D Ondrej Vala has joined them. . . . Also missing from Red Deer’s lineup: F Grayson Pawlenchuk and F Jeff de Wit, both with undisclosed injuries. . . . The Blazers (19-12-2) are 5-0-1 in their last six games. . . . The Rebels (16-12-6) have points in five straight (3-0-2). . . . Announced attendance: 4,093.
At Kent, Wash., G Dawson Weatherill stopped 29 shots, 16 of them in the third period, to lead the
Spokane Chiefs to a 3-1 victory over the Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . F Keegan Kolesar gave the Thunderbirds a 1-0 lead with his fourth goal, at 1:32 of the second period. . . . The visitors scored the last three goals. . . . F Ethan McIndoe got his seventh, at 9:38 of the second. . . . F Jaret Anderson-Dolan’s 17th goal, on a PP, at 9:23 of the second proved to be the winner. . . . F Keanu Yamamoto earned the primary assist on that goal as he ran his point streak to 13 games, the longest active streak in the WHL. . . . F Kailer Yamamoto scored his 20th goal, in his 26th game, into an empty net at 19:59. Last season, he totalled 19 goals in 57 games. . . . Anderson-Dolan has seven goals and two assists over his past five games. In 32 games, he has put up 17 goals and 13 assists. Last season, in 65 games, he had 14 goals and 12 assists. . . . G Rylan Toth stopped 30 shots for Seattle. . . . The Chiefs were 1-6 on the PP; the Thunderbirds were 0-3. . . . Spokane F Koby Morrisseau left the game and didn’t return after taking a hard hit from Seattle D Turner Ottenbreit. Before leaving the ice, Morrisseau received attention from both team trainers. Morrisseau, a 16-year-old from Grandview, Man., spent some time in hospital after taking a hit during an exhibition game against the Portland Winterhawks in September. . . . Linesman Zach Brooks needed attention from Seattle trainer Phil Varney after taking a puck to the face earlier in the game. Brooks didn’t miss a shift. . . . Spokane (14-11-6) has points in four straight (3-0-1). . . . Seattle (16-12-3) has lost two in a row. . . . Announced attendance: 4,510.
At Victoria, F Ryan Peckford scored two goals and added an assist to help the Royals to a 5-1 victory over the Portland Winterhawks. . . . Victoria took a 3-0 lead in to the second period on goals from F Jack Walker (16) at 6:13, Peckford at 7:29, and F Carter Folk (2) at 16:19. . . . F Joachim Blichfeld scored for Portland, getting his 12th goal at 12:33 of the second period. . . . Victoria F Dante Hannoun (13) got that one back just 2:07 later and Peckford got his 11th goal at 3:28 of the third period. . . . The game’s last three goals all came via the PP. . . . Victoria was 2-8 on the PP; Portland was 1-2. . . . The Royals got three assists from F Matt Phillips, while Walker added one to his goal. . . . The Royals got 32 saves from G Griffen Outhouse. . . . Portland G Cole Kehler stopped 29 shots. . . . F Vladimir Bobylev was pointless as he returned to the Royals’ lineup after a stint in his native Russia. . . . The teams are scheduled to play again tonight in Victoria. . . . The Royals (17-14-3) had lost their previous two games (0-1-1). . . . The Winterhawks (18-14-1) had a three-game winning streak snapped. . . . Announced attendance: 3,157.

WEDNESDAY’S GAMES (all times local):

Swift Current at Kootenay, 7 p.m.
Kamloops at Lethbridge, 7 p.m.
Prince Albert at Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.
Tri-City at Prince George, 7 p.m.
Edmonton at Saskatoon, 7:05 p.m.
Portland at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.


Friday, Dec. 16: Saskatoon at Brandon, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 16: Portland vs. Vancouver, at Langley, B.C., 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 17: Brandon at Saskatoon, 7:05 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 17: Portland at Everett, 7:05 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 17: Vancouver at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 21: Vancouver vs. Seattle, at Kent, Wash., 7:05 p.m.
Nov. 26: D Micheal Zipp, 19:47 1st period, Lethbridge 4 at Calgary 2.
Dec. 2: D Artyom Minulin, 13:24 1st period, Calgary 1 at Swift Current 5.
Dec. 2: F Jordy Bellerive, 14:00 1st period, Red Deer 3 at Lethbridge 5.
Dec. 3: F Adam Musil, 14:27 1st period, Lethbridge 2 at Red Deer 3 (OT).
Dec. 3: D Ondrej Vala, 10:38 1st period, Vancouver 2 at Kamloops 5.
Dec. 3: F Nick Merkley, 6:54 2nd period, Brandon 1 at Kelowna 3.
Dec. 9: F Austin Glover, 0:32 2nd period, Moose Jaw 7 at Prince Albert 3. 
Dec. 9: F Riley Woods, 11:45 1st period, Swift Current 1 at Regina 8.
Dec. 9: F Keanu Yamamoto, 4:01 1st period, Kootenay 3 at Spokane 4.
Dec. 10: D Josh Thrower, 12:13 1st period, Prince Albert 4 at Moose Jaw 5 (SO).
Dec. 10: F Nick Bowman, 13:38 2nd period, Kamloops 3 at Edmonton 2.
Dec. 10: D Troy Murray, 1:51 2nd, Kelowna 7 at Kootenay 3.
Dec. 10: F Max Gerlach, 5:26 1st period, Calgary 4 at Medicine Hat 7.
Dec. 10: F Skyler McKenzie 2:21 1st, Everett 2 at Portland 5.
Dec. 10: F Josh Curtis, 6:02 2nd period, Seattle 4 at Prince George 6.
Dec. 10: F Tyler Sandhu, 0:36 1st period, Victoria 3 at Tri-City 4.

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