The Western Hockey League is pleased to announce the WHL Three Stars for Round Two of the 2018 WHL Playoffs.
Swift Current Broncos goaltender Stuart Skinner (Edmonton Oilers) earned the first star of the round for his incredible performance in a seven-game series win against the Moose Jaw Warriors. Skinner finished the series with a 1.56 goals-against-average, .943 save percentage and three shutouts. Most impressively, Skinner’s three shutouts came on the road at Mosaic Place in Games Two, Five, and Seven. Overall, he stopped 101 of 105 shots directed his way at Mosaic Place and 214 of 227 shots in the series.
Through 14 games played in the 2018 WHL Playoffs, Skinner has an 8-6 record, 2.07 GAA, .934 SV% and four shutouts. He sits second among goaltenders in the 2018 WHL Playoffs in both GAA and SV% while also leading all goaltenders in shutouts and being involved in a three-way tie for first with eight wins. Skinner will now face his former team, the Lethbridge Hurricanes, in the Eastern Conference Championship. Over the course of the round, Skinner was named the WHL’s First Star of the night once while also picking up third star of the night honours three times.
Earning second star honours for Round Two was Lethbridge Hurricanes forward Brad Morrison. Morrison continued his torrid scoring pace from Round One, registering 13 points (6G-7A) in his team’s five-game series victory against the Brandon Wheat Kings. Morrison had multi-point performances in all five games, recording multi-goal efforts in Games Three, Four, and Five. Through the first two rounds of the 2018 WHL Playoffs, Morrison leads the WHL in scoring with 29 points (12G-17A), placing second in both goals and assists.
In just 10 games, Morrison has already surpassed the offensive production of every player from last year’s run to the Eastern Conference Championship and the team’s run to the Rogers WHL Championship Series in the 2008 WHL Playoffs. He’s also surpassed the offensive production of every player from the Hurricanes’ 1997 Ed Chynoweth Cup Championship squad. Morrison will look to continue his offensive surge against the Swift Current Broncos in the Eastern Conference Championship.
Rounding out the WHL Three Stars for Round Two was Everett Silvertips goaltender Carter Hart (Philadelphia Flyers), who backstopped his team to an impressive five-game victory against the offensively-talented Portland Winterhawks. In addition to a 4-1 record in the series, Hart maintained a 1.86 GAA, .949 SV% and one shutout. He closed out the series in Game Five by recording a combined shutout with teammate Dustin Wolf, with Hart making 30 saves and Wolf stopping four.
Through the first two rounds of the 2018 WHL Playoffs, Hart has maintained a 8-2-0-0 record, 1.92 GAA, .944 SV% and two shutouts. Hart has been stellar on the road as well, stopping 143 of 151 shots on the road for a .947 SV% away from Angel of the Winds Arena. He’s also maintained a 2.00 GAA and 4-0-0-0 record as the visitor, twice downing the Seattle Thunderbirds and Winterhawks. Hart’s figures through the first two rounds have him leading all WHL goaltenders in GAA, SV%, tied for first in wins and second in shutouts. Hart’s next challenge will lie with the Tri-City Americans in the Western Conference Championship.