The Brandon Wheat Kings are in control of their own destiny as they open the final weekend of the Western Hockey League regular season tonight in Regina.
If the Wheat Kings win their final two games, they'll play in the post-season for the 13th time in 14 years.
"We'll stay true to what we've talked about all week, worrying about our own games. If we do that, that'll serve us well," said Brandon GM/Coach Kelly McCrimmon on Thursday, "We've obviously got a good challenge with the home-and-home with Regina. They're a good hockey club, and we're looking forward to it."
In order to accomplish what they want to this weekend, the Wheat Kings will have to do something Friday night that they haven't done very often in the second half of the season.
Win on the road!
Brandon is 4-8-3-2 in 17 road games since the Christmas break, with three of those victories coming
against the Blades in Saskatoon.
"We've had some situations that weren't perfect in terms of our road games. (Tonight) is all about one game. I think getting a good start, getting our feet underneath us and controlling their top playersm," said McCrimmon, "We're going to have to be consistent through 60 minutes. We're going to have to really pay attention to their top guys, they've got some guys that have really good seasons, we're going to need to do a good job against them. Then, in turn, we have to be excited about having some people back in our lineup as well. It'll be a good test but one that the guys are really excited about getting started."
Anything other than a sweep of the Pats will leave Brandon relying on the results of the other two teams challenging for the final two playoff spots.
Brandon will welcome a pair of players back to their lineup tonight as Peter Quenneville and Jens Meilleur both return from lower body injuries.
The Wheat Kings are tied with Red Deer for seventh-place in the Eastern Conference, two points ahead of ninth-place Prince Albert.
The Rebels are idle Friday before starting a home-and-home series with Conference-leading Edmonton at home Saturday night while the Raiders host Saskatoon Friday and visit the Blades on Saturday.