Following the 2020 Western Hockey League Trade Deadline, a nine-game schedule of WHL action allowed teams to build early chemistry with their newest acquisitions. In Manitoba, the Jiri Patera show featured for the Brandon Wheat Kings once more. The Saskatoon Blades and Prince Albert Raiders each played a little extra time to claim wins against the Edmonton Oil Kings and Prince George Cougars; respectively. The Lethbridge Hurricanes doubled up the Calgary Hitmen and the Medicine Hat Tigers stormed back with five-unanswered goals to defeat the Moose Jaw Warriors. Over in the Western Conference, the Kamloops Blazers topped the Kelowna Rockets to open a home-and-home set while the new-look Victoria Royals took down the Portland Winterhawks. South of the border, the Seattle Thunderbirds rolled offensively with an eight-goal showing against the Tri-City Americans. In eastern Washington, Eli Zummack extended his point streak to 16 games, aiding in a victory for the Spokane Chiefs.
Red Deer Rebels at Brandon Wheat Kings – Scoring & Highlights
The Brandon Wheat Kings extended their winning streak to six games Friday with a 2-1 triumph over the Red Deer Rebels.
Luka Burzan (Colorado Avalanche) scored in the first and Marcus Sekundiak struck in the third to provide the offence for the Wheaties. Between the pipes, Jiri Patera stopped 41 of 42 shots for the near-perfect effort.
Dallon Melin’s fifth goal of the season was the lone source of offence for the Rebels.
Prince George Cougars at Prince Albert Raiders – Scoring & Highlights
Two of the newest acquisitions for the Prince Albert Raiders paved their team’s way to a 2-1 overtime victory against the Prince George Cougars Friday.
Max Paddock stopped 20 of 21 shots for the victory while Matthew Culling notched the overtime goal to end the game, marking his first goal in a Raider uniform. Jonny Hooker scored his first goal in a Cougar uniform to account for their lone goal of the game.
In a superb effort, Taylor Gauthier stopped 39 of 40 shots, narrowly taking the loss.
Edmonton Oil Kings at Saskatoon Blades – Scoring & Highlights
Captain Chase Wouters scored late in regulation and the Saskatoon Blades received shootout goals from Riley McKay and Colton Dach to top the Edmonton Oil Kings 2-1 in a comeback win on home ice Friday.
Dylan Guenther had the lone goal in regulation before Wouters scored with just shy of half a minute to go in regulation. In the five-round shootout, McKay scored in the third round before Dach scored in the fifth.
Rookie Koen MacInnes posted another strong performance between the pipes, making 36 saves through 65 minutes and allowing just a single goal on the subsequent five shootout attempts.
Moose Jaw Warriors at Medicine Hat Tigers – Scoring & Highlights
Three-point efforts from Brett Kemp and Cole Sillinger powered the Medicine Hat Tigers to score five-consecutive goals in a 5-2 victory against the visiting Moose Jaw Warriors Friday.
Newcomer Logan Doust and captain Owen Hardy scored in the first for the Warriors to put them ahead early, but a goal from Caleb Willms cut the deficit to one heading to the second.
The Tigers would pounce in the third as Sillinger tied the game up before Kemp scored the game-winning goal and notched the first of two empty-net goals for the Tigers. Daniel Baker would claim the other empty netter to round out the scoring.
Between the pipes, 2020 NHL Draft prospect Garin Bjorklund recovered from the early blemishes to stop 22 of 24 shots and earn the win.
Lethbridge Hurricanes at Calgary Hitmen – Scoring & Highlights
No Cozens, no Addison, no problem for the Lethbridge Hurricanes. Three goals in the third period powered the Hurricanes to a 4-2 win against the Calgary Hitmen Friday night in the Stampede city.
2020 NHL draft prospect Noah Boyko and Josh Prokop traded goals in the first period. Dino Kambietz would eventually break the 1-1 deadlock 112 seconds into the third, setting off a chain of scoring. Riley Stotts (Toronto Maple Leafs) tied up the game, but goals from Alex Cotton and Oliver Okuliar provided the eventual difference later on.
Carl Tetachuk made 22 saves for the win. Hitmen captain Mark Kastelic (Ottawa Senators) posted a pair of assists in the loss.
Kelowna Rockets at Kamloops Blazers – Scoring & Highlights
2020 NHL Draft prospect Connor Zary scored twice and newcomer Libor Zabransky found the back of the net in his first game with the Kamloops Blazers as they downed the Kelowna Rockets 4-1.
After the pair each scored in the first, Zary notched his second of the game in the middle period to make it a 3-0 game before Matthew Wedman (Florida Panthers) broke up the shutout before the close of the second frame. Brodi Stuart capped off the scoring in the third with his fourth of the season.
2020 NHL Draft prospect Dylan Garand stopped 23 of 24 shots, earning the win.
Portland Winterhawks at Victoria Royals – Scoring & Highlights
The new-look Victoria Royals took down the Portland Winterhawks by a 2-1 score in overtime Friday on home ice.
Brayden Tracey’s (Anaheim Ducks) first goal in a Royal uniform came 1:46 in overtime to clinch the extra point. Reece Newkirk (New York Islanders) opened the scoring in the first period and Keanu Derungs responded in the third before Tracey won it.
Shane Farkas put forth another excellent performance, making 42 saves on 43 shots against his former team.
Vancouver Giants at Spokane Chiefs – Scoring & Highlights
Eli Zummack’s goal to extend his point streak to 14 games stood up as the game-winning strike in a 3-1 victory for the Spokane Chiefs against the Vancouver Giants Friday in eastern Washington.
Michael King and Tristen Nielsen traded goals in the second period. That set the stage for the third, where Zummack and 2020 NHL Draft prospect Jack Finley both found the back of the net. Adam Beckman (Minnesota Wild) earned an assist to keep pace in a tie for the lead of the WHL scoring race.
Lukas Parik (Los Angeles Kings) made 41 saves for the victory.
Seattle Thunderbirds at Tri-City Americans – Scoring & Highlights
The Seattle Thunderbirds scored four times in the first period and rode the wave of offence to an 8-5 victory against the Tri-City Americans Friday.
Conner Bruggen-Cate and Jared Davidson each had a pair of goals, while Davidson finished with a three-point night. Andrej Kukuca tallied a goal and two assists for his three-point performance while Kai Uchacz and Tyrel Bauer each picked up a pair of helpers.
Mekai Sanders notched the first goal of his WHL career as part of a multi-point game while Keltie Jeri-Leon and Conner Roulette also scored.
Sasha Mutala (Colorado Avalanche) scored twice, extending his point streak to 11 games. Marc Lajoie, Connor Bouchard, and Blake Stevenson also scored in the loss.
Roddy Ross (Philadelphia Flyers) made 29 saves to claim the win.