Sunday, 26 September 2010

Wheat Kings Complete Sweep

The Brandon Wheat Kings picked up a 3-1 victory over the Regina Pats on Sunday afternoon to complete a sweep of the season-opening home-and-home series.

Brenden Walker and Paul Ciarelli scored goals 3:17 apart late in the second period to turn a 1-0 deficit into a 2-1 lead for Brandon, while Mark Stone added an insurance marker on a Wheat Kings' power-play midway through the final frame.

Ty Rimmer stopped 26 shots in the Brandon net to earn his first WHL victory, with 12 of those saves coming in the third period.

However, Rimmer's work earlier in the game was also key, allowing the Wheat Kings to maintain just a one-goal deficit through much of the second period.

Rimmer best stop was likely a point-blank glove save to rob Regina's Thomas Frazee about six minutes into the second period.

"There's a lot more to the game, goaltending-wise, than just the number of goals you let in or what your save percentage might be at the end of the night," said Wheat Kings' GM/Coach Kelly McCrimmon on CKLQ's post-game show, "I really felt that it was critical that we didn't fall two goals behind."

Brandon's 2-and-0 start to the Western Hockey League regular season may surprise some, especially when you consider the club dressed 11 first-year players in each of their opening two games.

"I think some guys have gained some really valuable experience," added McCrimmon, who picked up his 300th Wheat Kings' coaching victory Sunday, "You can quickly see how some of these guys are taking on a lot responsibility, both first-year players but, as well, returning players and the types of opportunities and responsibilities that they've been given."

Brandon's next action is Wednesday when they pay a visit to the Moose Jaw Warriors (8:00 p.m., CKLQ).

Chaff...McCrimmon is the 17th coach in WHL history to reach 300 wins...Stone and Walker both had fighting majors in Sunday's game as well, giving both players the proverbial 'Gordie Howe Hat-Trick'...Brandon went 1-for-6 with the man advantage while killing off all seven of Regina's power-play chances...D Eric Roy and F Carter Proft both made their WHL debuts on Sunday...D Mark Schneider (hip flexor) and F Jens Meilleur (hand) were Brandon's injury scratches.

Brandon Wheat Kings 3 at Regina Pats 1

First Period
1. Regina, Bell 2, (Muench, Reddin) 8:10

Penalties: Gustafsson Reg (cross-checking) 2:22, Fransoo Bdn (tripping) 4:18, Davidson Reg, Stone Bdn (fighting) 10:25, Miller Bdn (checking from behind), Ferland Bdn, Sparrow Reg (double roughing), Walker Bdn, Carlson Reg (fighting) 11:49, Gustafsson Reg (holding opp. stick) 17:28.

Second Period
2. Brandon, Walker 2, 15:50
3. Brandon, Ciarelli 1 (Stone, Melnychuk) 19:07

Penalties: Stephenson Reg (too many men) 3:29, Roy Bdn (interference) 4:55, Mitchell Reg (hooking) 6:42, Hunter Bdn (hooking) 17:01

Third Period
4. Brandon, Stone 1, (Bestland, Walker) 10:52 (PP)

Penalties: Miller Bdn (interference) 1:52, Miller Bdn (hooking) 4:53, Ashton Reg (slashing) 7:04, Jung Reg (tripping) 9:21, Wiebe Bdn (hooking) 17:50

Shots on goal
Brandon 13 14 3 - 30
Regina 8 7 12 - 27

Goal: Regina: Ketlo (L, 0-2-0); Brandon: Rimmer (W, 1-0-0)

Power plays (goals-chances): Brandon 1-6; Regina 0-7

Referees: Cole Hamm, Reagan Vetter;
Linesmen: Cam Kuffner, Sean Dufour.

Attendance: 4,219

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