WHL Tonight: Hurricanes & Hitmen shrug off Tuesday losses with Wednesday wins

Steve Hiscock/Saskatoon Blades


Western Hockey League Three Stars: Wednesday, November 21, 2018

1. Nolan Foote, Kelowna Rockets: 2019 NHL Draft prospect Nolan Foote scored the second and third goals of the game for the Kelowna Rockets as they won by a 3-2 final at home against the Regina Pats Wednesday.

The performance was Foote’s fourth multi-goal game of the season and the sixth of his WHL career. It was also the second time in his WHL career that he’s recorded a multi-goal game against the Pats, scoring twice against them on December 8, 2017.

2. Quinn Benjafield, Edmonton Oil Kings: Quinn Benjafield recorded his fourth multi-goal game of the season Wednesday, scoring the game-winning goal and an empty-net goal against the Brandon Wheat Kings in a 4-1 victory.

Benjafield now has 29 points (10G-19A) in 25 games this season and is on pace to average better than a point-per-game for the first time in his WHL career. Benjafield now has 156 points (61G-95A) in 286 WHL regular season games.

3. Carl Tetachuk, Lethbridge Hurricanes: Lethbridge Hurricanes goaltender picked up the first road win of his WHL career, stopping 35 of 36 shots against the Saskatoon Blades Wednesday in a 3-1 decision.

Tetachuk stopped 16 shots in the first, allowing the game’s opening goal, then stopped all 19 shots by the Blades over the final 40 minutes to secure the victory.


Edmonton Oil Kings 4 at Brandon Wheat Kings 1

Quinn Benjafield scored twice and Dylan Myskiw stopped 30 shots in his return to Westoba Place as the Edmonton Oil Kings beat the Brandon Wheat Kings 4-1 Wednesday night.

Wheat Kings captain Stelio Mattheos (Carolina Hurricanes) opened the scoring in the first, but the Oil Kings roared back with three goals in the first period.

First, Brett Kemp scored his 16th of the season while Benjafield struck for his first of the night for the eventual game-winning goal. On a late power play to close out the period, captain Trey Fix-Wolansky (Columbus Blue Jackets) struck for his 14th of the season.

That’d be all until the final minute of the third period when Benjafield added his second of the night into the empty net, clinching the Oil Kings’ 11th victory when leading after 40 minutes.

After allowing one goal on 13 shots in the opening period, Myskiw stopped all 18 shots from Brandon over the final 40 minutes to earn the win. A former member of the Wheat Kings, the Winnipeg, Man. product is now 6-0-1-0 at Westoba Place in his WHL career. Jiri Patera (Vegas Golden Knights) stopped 31 of 34 shots in the loss.

Fix-Wolansky added an assist for the multi-point game, allowing him to re-take the lead in the WHL scoring race with 48 points. Vince Loschiavo, Jake Neighbours, 2019 NHL Draft prospect Matthew Robertson, Zach Russell, and Conner McDonald each picked up an assist in the victory.

2019 NHL Draft prospect Luka Burzan and teammate Zack Wytinck picked up the only assists for Brandon Wednesday.

Lethbridge Hurricanes 3 at Saskatoon Blades 1

The Lethbridge Hurricanes shook off a loss Tuesday to pick up the first win of their four-game road trip in a 3-1 decision over the Saskatoon Blades Wednesday.

After the teams traded goals in the final minute of the opening period, the Hurricanes scored twice in the third to take charge of the game.

Tristen Robins took a beautiful feed from Kyle Crnkovic to open the scoring with 43 seconds to go in the opening period, but in a near-immediate response, Jadon Joseph scored his 10th of the season with 18 seconds to go in the period, keeping the game tied after 20 minutes.

Carl Tetachuk and Nolan Maier put on a show in the second as they combined for 22 saves on 22 shots, keeping the game tied heading to the third.

That’s where the Hurricanes changed the balance of the game as Ty Kolle’s fifth of the season stood up as the game-winning goal and Jackson Shepard put his first of the season into the empty net.

Tetachuk finished the game with 35 saves on 36 shots, earning him his second victory of the season. Kolle added a pair of assists for the three-point game. Maier finished the game with 25 saves.

The game was the sixth-straight contest between the two teams decided by two goals or less. Lethbridge improved to 4-1-1-0 in those games with their win Wednesday.

Regina Pats 2 at Kelowna Rockets 3

A pair of goals from 2019 NHL Draft prospect Nolan Foote and 23 saves from Roman Basran powered the Kelowna Rockets to a 3-2 win over the Regina Pats at Prospera Place Wednesday.

Kyle Crosbie’s third goal of the season was the only goal of the first period, giving the Rockets an early lead in their first home game since November 3.

Near the midway point of the second period, Foote doubled the Rockets’ lead on his 14th of the season. After Pats captain Jake Leschyshyn (Vegas Golden Knights) cut the Rockets’ lead back to a single goal, Foote tallied his second of the period with 1:37 left in the middle period to make it a two-goal game once again.

In the third, a last-minute goal from Aaron Hyman made the game interesting, but Basran and the Rockets held on for the victory.

2019 NHL Draft prospect Lassi Thomson recorded a pair of assists as did Liam Kindree. Mark Liwiski and Lane Zablocki (Detroit Red Wings) each added a single helper.

Nick Henry (Colorado Avalanche) added a pair of helpers while Austin Pratt also earned a helper. Leschyshyn picked up an assist too, giving him his 10th multi-point game of the season.

Dean McNabb stopped 28 shots in the loss.

Calgary Hitmen 3 at Portland Winterhawks 2

Carl Stankowski stopped 38 shots and a slick goal from Riley Stotts (Toronto Maple Leafs) stood up as the game-winning goal as the Calgary Hitmen shook off a loss Tuesday to win 3-2 against the Portland Winterhawks.

Winterhawks captain Cody Glass scored 9:28 into the first, giving the home side a 1-0 lead after 20 minutes, but the Hitmen came to play in the final 40 minutes.

Jake Kryski’s 11th goal of the season tied up the game 5:42 into the middle period, keeping the teams tied after 40 minutes.

In the early stages of the third, goals from James Malm and Stotts’ goal secured the victory. A pass from Cael Zimmerman was handled by Stotts mid-spin, breaking in alone and burying the deciding goal in the contest.

A late goal from 2019 NHL Draft prospect John Ludvig brought the Winterhawks close, but the night belonged to the Hitmen.

Carson Focht added a pair of assists in the win while Egor Zamula (Philadelphia Flyers) and Luke Coleman each added a single assist. Joachim Blichfeld (San Jose Sharks) Jaydon Dureau, Mason Mannek, and Matthew Quigley also picked up a single assist in the one-goal loss.

Shane Farkas stopped 25 shots in the loss.

Vancouver Giants 4 at Seattle Thunderbirds 2

The Vancouver Giants received a goal and an assist from 2019 NHL Draft prospect Bowen Byram, as well as Dylan Plouffe and Lukas Svejkovsky as they rolled to a 4-2 victory over the Seattle Thunderbirds south of the 49th parallel.

First-period goals from Byram and Plouffe put the Giants up early on. Milos Roman (Calgary Flames) continued his strong season with his 11th of the campaign 2:34 into the second, making it a 3-0 contest.

Thunderbirds captain Nolan Volcan would respond roughly 10 minutes later with his fifth of the season, but the Giants’ would retain their two-goal lead through 40 minutes.

In the third, the two teams traded goals from Svejkovsky and Zack Andrusiak, closing out the Giants’ first road victory against the U.S. Division since Saturday, September 22, 2018.

2019 NHL Draft prospect Trent Miner stopped 23 of 25 shots sent his way. Liam Hughes stopped 37 of the 41 shots sent his way.

Davis Koch contributed a pair of assists in the contest while Owen Hardy also picked up a single assist.

Owen Williams and Tyler Carpendale each had an assist for the Thunderbirds.

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