WHL Roundup: Tigers strike down Chiefs with offensive explosion

Randy Feere


Spokane Chiefs (4) at  Medicine Hat Tigers (7)
Spokane (8-6-0-1) // Medicine Hat (8-4-0-0)

Josh Williams had the first multi-goal game of his Western Hockey League career, five other players had multi-point games and Jordan Hollett made 36 saves as the Tigers ended the Chiefs’ two-game winning streak Wednesday at the Canalta Centre.

Williams opened the scoring 15:05 into the first, but the majority of the action would take place in a frantic second period as the two teams combined for six goals in a span of 11:30. David Quenneville, Hayden Ostir and Tyler Preziuso all scored for the Tigers while Riley Woods, Zach Fischer and Nolan Reid responded for the Chiefs.

In the third, Williams scored the game-winner 4:49 into the period to begin a 191-second stretch that saw the Tigers add three goals, with Ryan Chyzowski and James Hamblin also contribute to the cause. Hudson Elynuik’s eighth of the season rounded out the scoring four minutes later.

Ottawa Senators prospect Jordan Hollett made 36 saves, including 18 in the final period, to keep the Chiefs at bay and earn his fourth win of the season while the Tigers extended their lead in the Central Division to four points.

Up next for the Tigers is a date Friday with the East Division-leading Moose Jaw Warriors. The Chiefs continue their road trip against the Red Deer Rebels Friday.

Victoria Royals (3) at Prince Albert Raiders (4)
Victoria (10-4-1-0) // Prince Albert (5-4-3-0)

The Prince Albert Raiders helped end the Victoria Royals’ road trip on a sour note Wednesday with a furious third-period comeback.

Regan Nagy and Igor Martynov had the Royals ahead 2-1 after 40 minutes, with Winnipeg Jets prospect Jordy Stallard scoring the lone goal for Prince Albert. In the final 20 minutes though, the Raiders roared back. Cole Fonstad and Devon Skoleski scored 3:33 apart to give the Raiders their first lead of the game. It was short-lived however as Anaheim Ducks prospect Tyler Soy evened up the game 9:47 into the period.

That tie would too not last long as Max Martin scored 56 seconds later to give the Raiders a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.

The win helped the Raiders leapfrog back into the second wildcard position Wednesday while the Royals were denied their 11th win of the season, though they still enjoy a healthy nine-point lead in the B.C. Division standings.

In net, Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Ian Scott made 20 saves for the victory while Dean McNabb allowed four goals on 37 shots in the loss.

Up next for the Raiders is a visit Friday from the Brandon Wheat Kings to continue the season series at the Art Hauser Centre. The Royals will head home from their road trip to host the Vancouver Giants for games Saturday and Sunday on Vancouver Island.

Regina Pats (0) at Lethbridge Hurricanes (2)
Regina (8-6-1-0) // Lethbridge (6-5-0-0)

Stuart Skinner was impeccable Wednesday, making 36 saves in a shutout victory over the Regina Pats.

Skinner stopped eight shots in the first, 10 more in the second and 18 in the third to preserve the Hurricanes’ sixth win of the season. It was his seventh career WHL shutout.

Dylan Cozens scored late in the second and Ryan Vandervlis add a goal in the third to round out the scoring. Tyler Brown had a strong performance with just two mistakes on 24 shots, though those turned out to be the difference as the Pats continued a four-game road trip through the Central Division.

Emil Oksanen had seven shots while Josh Mahura and Jake Leschyshyn each had four shots.

Up next for the Hurricanes is four more home games, continuing Friday against the Calgary Hitmen. The Pats will next head to Red Deer to face the Rebels Saturday.

Moose Jaw Warriors (4) at Tri-City Americans (8)
Moose Jaw (10-4-0-0) // Tri-City (9-4-0-0)

The Tri-City Americans denied the Moose Jaw Warriors a chance at taking over the lead for most wins in the WHL Wednesday, remaining perfect at home this season with an 8-4 victory.

Picking up their fifth win in as many tries at the Toyota Centre Wednesday, the Americans had help all throughout their lineup. Jordan Topping led the offensive performances with a pair of goals and four points and Morgan Geekie had a goal and three points while Vegas Golden Knights defensive prospect Dylan Coghlan had four assists in the contest.

Isaac Johnson had the lone goal through the first 20 minutes to put the Ams up by one. That was followed by the two teams combining for five goals in the second and six more in the third.

Topping, Parker AuCoin and Riley Sawchuk scored in the second for the Americans while Oleg Sosunov and Justin Almeida responded for the Warriors.

In the final 20 minutes, Brett Howden scored 54 seconds into the period to bring the Warriors within one, but it had little effect on the Americans, who reeled off four straight goals to take a commanding lead. Geekie, Michael Rasmussen, Topping’s second of the game and Sasha Mutala all scored for Tri-City in a 5:45 span as they took control of the game. Jett Woo scored the last Warriors goal Wednesday.

Beck Warm made 32 saves to score the victory for Tri-City while Brody Willms made 29 saves in the loss.

Up next for the Americans is a trip to British Columbia, with games in Kelowna and Kamloops coming this weekend. The Warriors will close out their road trip in Medicine Hat Friday against the Tigers.

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