WHL Tonight: Hall sends teddies flying in Lethbridge as new-look Hurricanes storm to victory
Western Hockey League Three Stars: Friday, November 30, 2018
1. Zack Andrusiak, Seattle Thunderbirds: Zack Andrusiak scored the fourth hat trick of his WHL career Friday as the Thunderbirds earned a 7-4 victory against the Kootenay ICE. Andrusiak scored Seattle’s first, fourth, and sixth goals of the contest, picking up a primary assist on their second goal of the contest as well.
Andrusiak is now tied for eighth in the WHL in goals with 18, leading the Thunderbirds as one of just two players to hit double-digit goals. In 24 games, Andrusiak now has 24 points (18G-6A), including three power-play goals, one short-handed goal, and one game-winning goal. The Armstrong, B.C. product now has 109 points (60G-49A) in 163 games during his WHL career.
2. Peyton Krebs, Kootenay ICE: 2019 NHL Draft prospect Peyton Krebs of the Kootenay ICE recorded the first hat trick of his WHL career Friday in a 7-4 loss to the Seattle Thunderbirds. Krebs scored the second, third, and fourth goals of the contest for the ICE in a performance that also served as the second multi-goal game of his WHL career.
With the hat trick, Krebs became the first player from the ICE to crack the 30-point plateau this season, posting 31 points (10G-21A) in 25 games. The product of Okotoks, Alta. is one of six WHL skaters who earned an ‘A’ rating from NHL Central Scouting on their most recent updated list of ‘Players to Watch’ for the 2019 NHL Draft.
3. Brandon Hagel, Red Deer Rebels: Chicago Blackhawks prospect Brandon Hagel of the Red Deer Rebels scored twice and picked up an assist as the Rebels rolled to a 6-2 win against their Central Division rival the Calgary Hitmen Friday at home.
The win helped the Central Division leaders snap a three-game losing streak. Hagel scored the second and fifth goals of the game for Red Deer on the power play, picking up an assist on their first goal of the game as well. The product of Morinville, Alta. now has 221 points (79G-142A) in 218 WHL regular season games. Hagel sits fourth in WHL scoring this season with 44 points (17G-27A) in in 25 games.
Regina Pats 1 at Brandon Wheat Kings 5
Linden McCorrister’s goal midway through the first period stood up as the game-winning goal as five different members of the Brandon Wheat Kings scored Friday in a 5-1 win against the Regina Pats.
Ben McCartney opened the scoring 6:02 into the first period, but recent acquisition Ty Kolle answered back minutes later for his new team, levelling the score at 1-1. That tie would last all of 56 seconds though as McCorrister tallied his fifth of the campaign, pushing the Wheat Kings into the lead permanently.
2019 NHL Draft prospect Luka Burzan and teammate Cole Reinhardt added goals in the second while Marcus Sekundiak rounded out the scoring in the third.
Ethan Kruger held the Pats to a single goal, making 29 saves for the win. Max Paddock stopped 24 in the loss. McCorrister added an assist to his goal for the lone multi-point performance of the contest.
Moose Jaw Warriors 3 at Edmonton Oil Kings 1
The Moose Jaw Warriors continued their domination of the Edmonton Oil Kings Friday night by winning 3-1, their 10th in a row against Edmonton.
Despite the Warriors’ win, Edmonton was on the board first after Vince Loschiavo was able to settle a bouncing puck and put it past Moose Jaw’s Adam Evanoff. Coming back hot in the second period, 2019 NHL Draft prospect Brayden Tracey and Yegor Buyalski answered Edmonton’s lone goal by doubling the score, 2-1. A redirected goal by Justin Almeida (Pittsburgh Penguins) in the third period capped the game at a 3-1 finish for Moose Jaw.
Tristin Langan also notched two points against the Oil Kings, with an assist on Tracey and Almeida’s goals.
Earning his sixth win, his highest save percentage this season at 0.972 and the first star of the game was Moose Jaw’s Evanoff who stopped 35 of 36 shots.
Swift Current Broncos 1 at Lethbridge Hurricanes 3
Justin Hall’s first career WHL goal sent the teddy bears flying in southern Alberta Friday night as the Lethbridge Hurricanes rolled to a 3-1 win against the visiting Swift Current Broncos.
After a scoreless first, Hall lit the lamp after getting sprung on a partial break where he buried the puck past Joel Hofer (St. Louis Blues) for the electrifying goal.
Max Patterson’s eighth of the season would tie up the game seven minutes later, but Zach Cox struck back minutes later to restore the one-goal lead after 40 minutes. In the third, Jake Elmer’s 12th of the season provided the insurance goal of the game, coming with 6:38 left in the contest.
Hall picked up the multi-point performance in the game, assisting on Cox’s game-winning goal. Jake Leschyshyn (Vegas Golden Knights) picked up a primary assist on Hall’s goal for his first point as a member of the Hurricanes.
Hofer came through with another strong 39-save performance, but took the loss. Rookie Carl Tetachuk stopped 25 of 26 in the victory, his third straight.
Calgary Hitmen 2 at Red Deer Rebels 6
A 6-2 win for the Red Deer Rebels allowed them to extend their record against the Calgary Hitmen to 5-0 in the 2018-19 Regular Season.
The Rebels dominated the first period, with Jeff de Wit scoring twice as well as Brandon Hagel (Chicago Blackhawks) and Chris Douglas notching a goal each to finish the period with a 4-0 lead over Calgary. Adding his second goal of the night, Hagel scored on a quick snapshot on the powerplay to tally five goals for Red Deer.
Refusing to give up, the Hitmen pressed on and scored two goals thanks to Luke Coleman and 2019 NHL Draft prospect Mark Kastelic. But, before the end of the game, Douglas would also score his second goal, ending the game with a score of 6-2.
Stopping 43 of 45 shots, 2019 NHL Draft prospect Ethan Anders also contributed to the Rebels domination.
Saskatoon Blades 2 at Kamloops Blazers 3 (OT)
2019 NHL Draft prospect Quinn Schmiemann picked a perfect corner high glove-side on fellow draft-eligible goaltender Nolan Maier as the Kamloops Blazers erased a 2-0 hole to win 3-2 in overtime against the Saskatoon Blades.
Everything was going the Blades’ way to begin the game as goals from Emil Malysjev, the first of his WHL career, and Max Gerlach featured in the second period. The Blazers wouldn’t be shutout through 40 minutes though as captain Jermaine Loewen (Dallas Stars) struck for his first home goal of the season to cut the deficit to one after 40 minutes.
Searching for the equalizer in the third, the Blazers found an answer to their prayers halfway through as Orrin Centazzo sprung Connor Zary in on a breakaway, with the forward converting on the chance to send the game into overtime.
In the extra period, the Blazers pounced on a chance 89 seconds into overtime as Centazzo broke up the ice and was joined by Schmiemann, making it a 2-on-1 rush. Centazzo sent the puck over the Schmiemann who bided his time, found his spot, and sniped the puck perfectly over Maier’s trapper for the game-winning goal.
Dylan Garand finished with 23 saves for the victory while Maier stopped 26 of 29 in the loss.
In his return to the Sandman Centre, former Blazer Dawson Davidson chipped in a pair of assists for the Blades.
Kootenay ICE 4 at Seattle Thunderbirds 7
In an extremely close, back-and-forth game of hat tricks, the Seattle Thunderbirds resulted as the winners against the Kootenay ICE, 7-4.
Seattle’s Zack Andrusiak scored the lone goal in the first period with a slick wrist shot from the middle of the zone, leading the game 1-0. In the second period, a flurry of goals were exchanged between the two teams with Simon Kubicek, Noah Philp and Andrusiak scoring for Seattle and Michael Milne and 2019 NHL Draft prospect Peyton Krebs scoring twice for Kootenay.
Heading into the third period, with Seattle leading 4-3, Krebs poured on the gas and scored his first WHL career hat trick on a sweet snapshot goal, but seconds later Andrej Kukuca regained the lead for Seattle, 5-4. Andrusiak scored again to earn his fourth hat trick of his WHL career and Tyler Carpendale scored the seventh goal of the game to finalize the score 7-4 for the Thunderbirds.
Kelowna Rockets 3 at Tri-City Americans 2 OT
Sitting in fourth place in both of their divisions, the Kelowna Rockets and Tri-City Americans battled it out in a tight overtime game where the Rockets came up with the overtime winner.
Opening the game with the first goal, Kyle Olson (Anaheim Ducks) ricocheted the puck off a Rockets’ defender to score for Tri-City. In the second period, Leif Mattson and Kyle Crosbie scored to turn the game around in the Rocket’s favour, 2-1. Closing in on the end of the third, 2019 NHL Draft prospect Krystof Hrabik managed to rocket a shot from the blue line past Kelowna’s goaltender James Porter to tie the game 2-2.
Just seconds into overtime Mattson notched his second goal of the night on a rebound on a wide-open net to win the game. Standing tall in net for the Rockets was Porter who stopped 26 of 28 shots.
Spokane Chiefs 4 at Everett Silvertips 5 (OT)
There was bedlam in downtown Everett and then some Friday night.
The Everett Silvertips scored three goals in the final 10 minutes of regulation before captain Connor Dewar secured the victory with his team-leading 23rd goal of season, ending the game in a 5-4 overtime advantage for the Silvertips against the Spokane .
As the Silvertips bided their time, the Spokane Chiefs jumped out to a 2-0 lead early on in the game as Eli Zummack and Luc Smith’s first as a Chief had Spokane in front after 20 minutes. Riley Sutter (Washington Capitals) would bring the Silvertips within a goal in the second period, but an early third-period goal from Filip Kral (Toronto Maple Leafs) restored the two goal advantage with time ticking down.
Cue the comeback.
With 9:37 left, Wyatte Wylie (Philadelphia Flyers) struck to cut the deficit back to a single goal, followed 183 seconds later by a goal from Akash Bains to tie up the game. Then Martin Fasko-Rudas put Everett in front 4-3 with just 2:27 to go in regulation, placing the pressure on the Chiefs.
To their credit, Spokane would have a response from the stick of Ethan McIndoe, tying the game with 16 seconds to go.
It’d matter little to the Silvertips, who waltzed down the ice with the puck, past the face-off circle and beat Dawson Weatherill for the game-winning strike, his fifth of the season.
2019 NHL Draft prospect Dustin Wolf picked up the victory.