Saturday, February 25, 2017

Silvertips, Americans streaking ... Tigers retire Lysiak's No. 9 ... Hitmen stun Rebels

Steve Ewen, who covers the Vancouver Giants for Postmedia, revealed Saturday morning that he is preparing for a second battle with cancer.
Ewen, one of the good guys, has fired up his blog again — Crush the Tumour with Humour.
On Saturday, he started a post with:
“I have a surgery some time this week to put a pin in my left leg. Hopefully it doesn't clash with the rods in my back.
“The cancer is back. Multiple myeloma. I had been in remission for six years, but when I was diagnosed with a solitary plasmacytoma in 2010 we were told that there was a good chance that it would return. We received recurrence rates of anywhere between 30 and 70 per cent then.”
Keep Steve and his wife, Carol-Ann, in your thoughts and prayers, and feel free to visit with him at his blog, which is right here.
More WHL teams have postponed or cancelled fan-related events due to the mumps scare that is going through the league.
The Regina Pats were to have had a post-game skate with fans after their Sunday game with the visiting Swift Current Broncos. But that has been cancelled, and hopefully will be rescheduled.
Meanwhile, the Portland Winterhawks Booster Club was informed that player appearances at the Les Schwab in the Pearl District and Southeast scheduled for Monday have been postponed and will be rescheduled at dates to be determined.
The Winterhawks/Burgerville events scheduled for March 6 are on, but could be impacted should the mumps situation continue much longer.
The Vancouver Giants have signed D Austin King-Cunningham to a WHL contract and he made his WHL debut in Victoria against the Royals on Saturday night. . . . A list player, King-Cunningham is from Pilot Butte, Sask. He had three goals and eight assists in 33 games with Battlefords Stars of the Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League this season. The 6-foot-1, 185-pounder led the SMAAAHL in penalty minutes, with 161. . . . The Stars didn’t make the playoffs, so King-Cunningham is free to join the Giants.
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At Everett, the Silvertips clinched their 14th straight playoff berth as they beat the Kamloops Blazers, 3-1.
. . . The Silvertips have qualified for the playoffs in every season they have played in the WHL. . . . Everett got off to a quick start when F Matt Fonteyne scored his 16th goal just 54 seconds into the first period. . . . F Patrick Bajkov made it 2-0 with No. 25 at 5:56. . . . Everett went ahead 3-0 on F Eetu Tuulola’s 16th goal, at 9:36 of the third period. . . . Kamloops F Lane Bauer scored his 36th goal at 19:14. . . . The Silvertips got two assists from D Kevin Davis. . . . Everett G Carter Hart finished with 35 saves. This was the second time since Feb. 17 that Hart lost a shutout late in a game with the other team’s goaltender on the bench for an extra attacker. It happened on Feb. 17 in a 3-1 victory over the host Prince Albert Raiders. . . . Late in the game, Hart took a shot at an empty Kamloops net. “He missed the net by quitre a bit,” Everett head coach Kevin Constantine told Jesse Geleynse of the Everett Herald, “but you’ve seen goalies lately, pulled goalie situation and the puck gets dumped in. If they get a shot they go for it. Maybe with a one-goal lead you try not to do that because it’s an icing, but with a three-goal lead why not? It certainly got a rise out of the crowd.” . . . G Dylan Ferguson stopped 24 shots for the Blazers. . . . Each team was 0-3 on the PP. . . . The Silvertips (38-12-10) have won seven in a row. They lead the U.S. Division by three points over Seattle with two games in hand. . . . The Blazers (37-21-6) have lost two straight. They are second in the B.C. Division, five points behind Prince George. . . . Announced attendance: 6,377.

At Cranbrook, B.C., the Lethbridge Hurricanes opened up a 4-0 first-period lead en route to a 5-3 victory
over the Kootenay Ice. . . . F Tyler Wong scored twice in that first period, giving him a WHL-leading 45 goals, and D Brennan Menell had three assists. . . . Wong opened the scoring at 6:23, with F Tanner Nagel (8) making it 2-0 at 8:48. . . . F Matt Alfaro, who was acquired from the Ice in January, scored at 9:29 and Wong, on a PP, made it 4-0 at 17:23. . . . D Brennan Riddle drew assists on the first two goals. . . . The Ice didn’t fold, though, and cut the deficit to one. . . . D Troy Murray (4) got it started at 3:54 of the third period. . . . F Colton Kroeker got his 15th goal, shorthanded, at 8:46, and D Cale Fleury (10) scored on a PP at 10:49 to get the Ice to within one. . . . Alfaro iced the victory with his 22nd goal, into an empty net, at 19:21. . . . The Ice got two assists from F Vince Loschiavo. . . . G Ryan Gilchrist stopped 30 shots for Lethbridge. . . . G Payton Lee, who picked up an assist, turned aside 22 shots for Kootenay. . . . The Hurricanes were 1-3 on the PP; the Ice was 1-4. . . . Lethbridge (38-17-7) has won two in a row. The Hurricanes are second in the Central Divison, six points behind Medicine Hat. . . . Kootenay (13-38-10) has lost three straight. . . . Announced attendance: 1,709.

At Medicine Hat, G Michael Bullion stopped 26 shots to lead the Tigers to a 4-0 victory over the Brandon Wheat Kings. . . . Prior to the game, the Tigers celebrated the career of F Tom Lysiak as they retired his
sweater number (9). F Zach Fisher, who had been wearing No. 9, has switched to 39. During the ceremony, Fischer took off the No. 9 sweater and presented it to Lysiak family members. . . . Bullion, who was acquired from the Portland Winterhawks in January, posted his second shutout in five starts and the second of his career. . . . D David Quenneville opened the scoring, on a PP, when he scored his 21st goal at 9:29 of the first period. . . . F Mason Shaw (25) made it 2-0 at 16:57. . . . F Chad Butcher assisted on both goals. . . . The Tigers got to 3-0 when F Mark Rassell scored his 30th at 13:33 of the second period. . . . F Gary Haden (7) closed out the scoring at 2:19 of the third period. . . . Rassell also had an assist. . . . Brandon got 45 stops from G Logan Thompson. . . . Medicine Hat was 1-6 on the PP; Brandon was 0-3. . . . The two teams at the heart of the WHL’s mumps situation had three players missing due to illness — F James Hamblin and D Jordan Henderson of the Tigers and F Baron Thompson of the Wheat Kings. . . . The Wheat Kings lost F Ty Lewis to an undisclosed injury during this one. . . . Medicine Hat (44-18-1) has won two in a row. The Tigers are second in the overall standings, six points behind Regina which has three games in hand. . . . Brandon (28-25-9) has lost four straight (0-3-1). It holds down the Eastern Conference’s first wild-card spot. . . . The Wheat Kings have lost eight straight road games. . . . Announced attendance: 4,489.

At Moose Jaw, the Warriors snapped a 2-2 tie with three third-period goals and went on to beat the Swift Current Broncos, 5-2. . . . F Noah Gregor, in his first game since Jan. 7, gave the Warriors a 1-0 lead with
No. 21 at 8:52 of the second period. . . . D Josh Brook (8) made it 2-0 at 18:23. . . . The Broncos tied the game with two late second-period goals despite being outshot 21-5 over the 20 minutes. . . . F Ryley Lindgren got No. 18 at 19:12 and F Glenn Gawdin (22) tied the score at 19:38. . . . The Warriors took a 3-2 lead when F Tanner Jeannot (16) scored at 8:15 of the third period. . . . F Thomas Foster added insurance with his 18th goal, at 12:23, and F Brayden Burke, in his first game since Feb. 8, got the final goal, his 17th, at 15:40. . . . Jeannot also had two assists, while Foster had one. . . . The Warriors got 25 stops from G Zach Sawchenko. . . . At the other end, Jordan Papirny turned aside 38. . . . Swift Current was 0-2 on the PP; Moose Jaw was 0-3. . . . F Mackenzie Wight, an 18-year-old from Burnaby, B.C., made his Swift Current debut. The Broncos acquired him from the Seattle Thunderbirds in December for F Tyler Adams, 19, and an undisclosed conditional pick in the 2019 bantam draft. Earlier in the season, he was pointless in six games with the Thunderbirds, who selected him in the seventh round of the 2014 WHL bantam draft. Wight has been playing with the BCHL’s Alberni Valley Bulldogs. He had six goals and six assists in 27 games. . . . The Broncos were without F Lane Pederson, who sat out the first of a two-game suspension after he took a charging major and game misconduct for a hit on Regina F Robbie Holmes during the Pats’ 7-0 home-ice victory on Friday night. Holmes left the game with an apparent shoulder injury. . . . The Warriors (37-17-8) have won five in a row. They are headed to a second-place finish in the East Division as they are 13 points behind Regina and 12 ahead of third-place Swift Current. . . . The Broncos (30-20-10) have lost three straight (0-2-1). They are five points ahead of fourth-place Brandon. . . . The Broncos lost 7-0 in Regina on Friday, played in Moose Jaw on Saturday and are back in Regina for a Sunday game. . . . Announced attendance: 3,829.
At Prince Albert, the Raiders broke a 1-1 tie with two early third-period goals as they defeated the
Saskatoon Blades, 4-2. . . . F Cavin Leth had given the home team a 1-0 lead with his 19th goal, on a PP, at 10:05 of the first period. . . . F Michael Farren (6) got Saskatoon even at 10:55 of the second period. . . . The Raiders regained the lead when F Simon Stransky got No. 17 at 4:48 of the third. . . . F Kolten Olynek, who also had an assist, got his 12th goal, at 6:52, for a 3-1 lead. . . . The Blades got to within a goal when F Braylon Shmyr (29) scored at 18:04. . . . The Raiders iced it on F Curtis Miske’s 17th goal, into an empty net, at 19:32. . . . G Ian Scott earned the victory with 21 saves, two more than Saskatoon’s Logan Flodell. . . . The Raiders were 1-2 on the PP; the Blades were 0-7. . . . Saskatoon has won four of six games from Prince Albert this season. . . . The Blades are 0-5-1 and have been outscored 24-10 in their past six road appearances. . . . Prince Albert (17-40-6) had lost its previous two games (0-1-1). . . . Saskatoon (24-30-8) is two points out of a playoff spot. . . . Announced attendance: 2,396.

At Prince George, F Jesse Gabrielle scored twice and added an assist as the Cougars skated to a 5-2 victory over the Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . The Cougars also became the first B.C. Division to clinch a
playoff spot this season. . . . F Jared Bethune gave the home boys a 1-0 lead with his 18th goal, at 4:27 of the first period. . . . Gabrielle upped that to 2-0 at 12:01. . . . D Conner McDonald’s sixth goal, on a PP, at 19:08 got the Oil Kings to within a goal. . . . Gabrielle’s 29th goal, on a PP, restored the Cougars’ two-goal lat at 15:17 of the second period. . . . F Tyler Robertson’s 15th goal, also on a PP, pulled Edmonton back to within a goal, at 18:10. . . . The Cougars put it away with third-period goals from F Josh Curtis (8), at 5:47, and F Radovan Bondra (29), on a PP, at 6:37. . . . The Cougars got two assists from each of F Jansen Harkins and Bondra, with Bethune adding one. . . . G Nick McBride earned the victory with 31 saves. . . . At the other end, Josh Dechaine stopped 42 shots in his second straight start. . . . The Cougars had beaten visiting Edmonton, 4-1, on Friday. . . . Prince George was 2-3 on the PP; Edmonton was 2-5. . . . F Brad Morrison (undisclosed injury) was among Prince George’s scratches. Also out was F Colby McAuley, who got a two-game suspension after taking a boarding major and game misconduct for a hit on F Ty Gerla of the Edmonton Oil Kings on Friday night. Gerla was a scratch on Saturday night. . . . F Max Kryski, 16, made his WHL debut with the Cougars. He is the younger brother of F Jake Kryski of the Calgary Hitmen. Max, from Kelowna, has been playing for the Kelowna-based Okanagan Rockets of the B.C. Major Midget Hockey League. . . . The Cougars (40-19-5) have points in three straight (2-0-1). They lead the B.C. Division by five points over Kamloops. Each team has eight games remaining; they will play each other four times. . . . The Oil Kings (20-38-5) have lost six in a row (0-5-1). They went 0-4 on a trip into the B.C. Division and were outscored 26-4 in the process. . . . Announced attendance: 5,805.

At Red Deer, the Calgary Hitmen scored the game’s last six goals and beat the Rebels, 6-3. . . . The Calgary onslaught included five goals on 26 third-period shots. . . . The Rebels seemed to take control
with three second-period goals. . . . F Austin Pratt (14) started it at 5:34, before F Lane Zablocki scored twice, giving him 23, at 8:31 and 18:20. . . . Calgary got some life when F Matteo Gennaro got his 36th goal, on a PP, at 19:09. . . . F Andrei Grishakov’s 10th goal allowed the Hitmen to get within one goal just 23 seconds into the third period. . . . F Luke Coleman, who is from Red Deer, tied the game at 5:58. . . . D Jameson Murray put the Hitmen out front with his first WHL goal at 7:58. Murray, from Kelowna, turned 18 on Feb. 10. He scored his first goal in his 30th game. . . . D Brady Reagan (5) added insurance, on a PP, at 12:35. . . . Coleman put it away with his 13th goal at 13:33. . . . The Hitmen got two assists from each of D Jake Bean, D Micheal Zipp, D Vladislav Yeryomenko and F Mark Kastelic, while Reagan had one. . . . F Adam Musil had two helpers for the Rebels. . . . G Trevor Martin stopped 34 shots for Calgary. . . . Red Deer G Lasse Petersen stopped 41. . . . Calgary was 2-3 on the PP; Red Deer was 0-1. . . . The Hitmen (24-27-10) moved two points ahead of Saskatoon in the race for the Eastern Conference’s second wild-card spot. . . . The Rebels (25-28-10) had points in each of their previous three games (2-0-1). Red Deer is third in the Central Division, two points ahead of Calgary. . . . These teams will meet again this afternoon in Calgary. . . . Announced attendance: 5,355.

At Kent, Wash., F Ryan Gropp scored the game’s first two goals and the last one as the Seattle Thunderbirds dumped the Kelowna Rockets, 5-3. . . . Gropp provided Seattle with a 2-0 lead as he
scored on two of its first three shots, at 3:26 and 5:42 of the first period. The second of those goals came via the PP. . . . Seattle D Ethan Bear stretched the lead to 3-0, on a PP, at 3:32 of the second period. . . . F Dillon Dube got Kelowna on the scoreboard with his 11th goal, scoring on a penalty shot at 7:26. . . . F Keegan Kolesar (21) scored another Seattle PP goal, this one at 9:47. . . . F Reid Gardiner got his ninth goal for Kelowna, on a PP, at 8:38 of the third period. . . . Gropp completed his hat trick, for a 5-2 lead, with an empty-netter, on a PP, at 18:53. . . . F Kyle Topping (12) scored Kelowna’s final goal, at 19:37. . . . Gropp also had an assist, while F Mathew Barzal drew four assists and Kolesar had two. That line combined for 10 of Seattle’s 15 scoring points. . . . Bear also had an assist as he ran his career point total to 187. That ties him with Craig Channell for second on the franchise list for career points by a defenceman. Shea Theodore holds the record (212). . . . Bear has at least a point in 11 straight games, the longest active streak in the WHL at the moment, while Kolesar is at 10 games. . . . Dube added an assist to his goal. . . . The Thunderbirds got 36 stops from G Rylan Toth, while Kelowna’s Michael Herringer blocked 19. . . . Toth is tied for the WHL lead in victories (32) with Griffen Outshouse of Victoria. . . . Seattle was 4-9 on the PP; Kelowna was 1-4. . . . D Jarret Tyszka was among Seattle’s scratches after he was injured in Friday’s 7-3 loss to the host Tri-City Americans. . . . Seattle (39-18-5) is second in the U.S. Division, three points behind Everett. . . . Kelowna (36-21-5) had points in each of its previous seven games (6-0-1). It is third in the B.C. Division, three points behind Kamloops and four ahead of Victoria. . . . The Rockets, who beat the Blazers 8-2 in Kamloops on Friday, finish their weekend Sunday afternoon in Spokane. . . . Announced attendance: 5,313.
At Spokane, F Tyler Sandhu scored three goals and added an assist as the Tri-City Americans dumped
the Chiefs, 5-1. . . . Spokane F Kailer Yamamoto scored the game’s first goal, getting No. 35 at 10:58 of the opening period. . . . Sandhu, who has 20 goals, tied the game at 14:41 of the first and put his side ahead at 11:27 of the second period. . . . F Jordan Topping added insurance at 9:55 of the third period. . . . Sandhu completed his hat trick at 12:45 and Topping (23) closed out the scoring with an empty-netter, at 19:30. . . . The Americans got four assists from F Morgan Geekie and two from D Juuso Valimaki, with Topping adding one. . . . G Evan Sarthou stopped 33 shots for Tri-City. . . . The Chiefs got 21 saves from G Jayden Sittler. . . . G Donovan Buskey was on the bench in support of Sittler. Buskey, who turned 17 on Jan. 29, is from North Vancouver, B.C., and was a third-round pick by the Chiefs in the 2015 bantam draft. Buskey has been playing for the major midget Vancouver Northwest Giants. . . . Buskey replaced G Dawson Weatherill, who was scratched. . . . The Americans (38-23-3) have won seven in a row. They are third in the U.S. Division, four points behind Seattle. . . . The Chiefs (25-26-9) have lost two straight. They are nine points out of a playoff spot. . . . Announced attendance: 9,331.
At Victoria, F Jared Dmytriw scored twice to help the Royals to a 3-1 victory over the Vancouver Giants. .
. . The Royals went ahead 1-0 when F Vladimir Bobylev scored his seventh goal, at 1:30 of the first period. . . . Dmytriw made it 2-0 at 8:55. . . . It went to 3-0 at 9:37 of the second period when Dmytriw got his 12th goal. . . . Victoria got three assists from F Matt Phillips. . . . F Calvin Spencer (14) scored his 14th goal, on a PP, at 15:52 of the second period. . . . Victoria G Griffen Outhouse turned aside 31 shots in posting his 32nd victory of the season. That ties the Royals’ single-season record that was set last season by Coleman Vollrath. . . . G David Tendeck stopped 20 shots for the Giants. . . . Vancouver was 1-3 on the PP; Victoria was 0-2. . . . The Royals (34-23-5) have points in four straight games (3-0-1). They are in possession of the Western Conference’s first wild-card spot. . . . The Giants (19-38-5) have lost two in a row. . . . The Royals had beaten the Giants, 6-4, in Langley, B.C., on Friday night. The two teams will complete their weekend tripleheader today in Victoria. . . . Announced attendance: 7,006, on Pink in the Rink night.

SUNDAY’S GAMES (all times local):

Red Deer at Calgary, 4 p.m.
Swift Current at Regina, 4 p.m.
Moose Jaw at Saskatoon, 4:05 p.m.
Everett vs. Seattle, at Kent, Wash., 5:05 p.m.
Kelowna at Spokane, 5:05 p.m.
Vancouver at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.

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