Sunday, 23 February 2014

Brandon Snaps Winless Streak

Tim McGauley scored his first career WHL hat-trick
on Saturday night
  The Brandon Wheat Kings' eight-game winless streak came to an end with a 7-4 victory over the Moose Jaw Warriors on Saturday night.

  Tim McGauley scored his first career WHL hat-trick, with all three of his goals coming as part of a five-goal second period for Brandon.

  "Getting some guys back from injury definitely helped with the offensive ability of our team.  It started against Calgary (on Friday) and guys were going really hard," said McGauley on CKLQ's post-game show, "Tonight, we brought the same mentality into this game and, fortunately, pucks were going into the net for us."

  Jesse Gabrielle added a pair of goals for Brandon while Ryan Pulock had a goal and two assists.

It was a milestone night for Brandon
captain Ryan Pulock Saturday
  Pulock's second period power-play goal was his 20th of the season and 61st of his career, tying Brad McCrimmon's franchise record for career goals by a defenceman.

 The Grandview, Manitoba product also recorded his 200th career point, becoming the fifth defenceman in Wheat Kings' history to reach that plateau.

  "It was a great goal.  I've seen it before over the course of the four years, more than once, but pretty much a trademark Ryan Pulock goal," said Brandon GM/Coach Kelly McCrimmon, "He was begging for the puck, wanting to shoot it and he scored a great goal as we've seen him do many times."

  Brett Kitt also scored for Brandon while Jordan Papirny made 41 saves in the Wheat Kings' net.

  It was the Wheat Kings' first victory since an 8-1 home-ice win over Swift Current on February 7.

  "To win this one was huge for our team.  We knew, going into this game, we had to win," said McGauley, "We've lost too many games in a row to lose this.  To win this game was a huge relief for our team and everyone in the room is a lot more confident now."

  Brandon (29-26-6-2) remains two points behind sixth-place Swift Current and moves four points ahead of Prince Albert and Red Deer for the final two playoffs spots in the WHL's Eastern Conference.

  After playing 15 games in 26 days, the Wheat Kings get a bit of break before hosting the Lethbridge Hurricanes on Wednesday night (7:00 p.m., Westman Communications Group Place).

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