Monday, 11 November 2013

Nejezchleb Hatty Paces Wheat Kings

  Richard Nejezchleb’s first career Western Hockey League hat-trick paced the Brandon Wheat Kings to a 5-3 victory over the Lethbridge Hurricanes on Monday.

  Nejezchleb’s hat-trick goal was the game-winner with 4:45 left in the third period while Peter Quenneville and Jens Meilleur, into an empty-net, also scored for Brandon.

  Nejezchleb had three two-goals games earlier this season and another pair a year ago so the 19-year old Czech product was happy to finally complete the hat-trick.

  “It was nice.  I feel happy tonight.  I had a hat-trick, he got a win on home ice.  It’s a pretty good feeling,” said Nejezchleb on CKLQ’s post-game show, “Kelly (Wheat Kings’ coach McCrimmon) put me on the net-front on the power-play and tried to teach me how to play around the net and put the pucks in, and it works.”

  Nejezchleb moved into a tie for third in the WHL with 16 goals on the season including eight in the last five games while Ryan Pulock added three assists for Brandon.

  “It was a big game for a lot of reasons.  If you look at the Eastern Conference standings, getting some points in imperative,” said Brandon GM/Coach Kelly McCrimmon, “You have to win on home-ice.  We went out to the U.S. on our long trip, we had a 5-and-2 record on home-ice which I think is pretty good, but we came home and didn’t win the Saskatoon or Swift Current games so now you’re 5-and-4 on home-ice and that’s just not good enough.  Those points are hard to get back on the road so you really have to be good on home-ice and, today, just based on the fact that is was the third game of the home stand we had here, it was imperative that we did get points and must-win is exactly how we looked at it.”

  The victory snapped a two-game losing skid and improved the Wheat Kings’ record to 10-11-0-0 on the season.

  Brandon’s next game is Wednesday night when they visit the Saskatoon Blades (7:05 p.m., 880 CKLQ).

Chaff...Brandon D Eric Roy was helped off the ice in the second period after blocking a shot off the side of his left leg and did not return...former Wheat King Corbin Boes made 38 saves in the Hurricanes’ net in his first visit  back to Brandon.

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