Friday, 2 January 2015

Wheat Kings Make it Four Straight

Alex Moodie stopped 30 shots to pick up the win
against his former team.
  Braylon Shmyr and Nolan Patrick scored a pair of goals each to lead the Brandon Wheat Kings to a 5-2 victory over the Saskatoon Blades on New Year’s Day.
  Peter Quenneville also scored for the Wheat Kings while Alex Moodie stopped 32 shots to pick up the win against his former team.
  After the teams traded goals in the first period, Alex Forsberg scored 13 seconds into the second period on a long range shot and Brandon GM and Coach Kelly McCrimmon said on CKLQ’s post-game show that Moodie’s ability to bounce back from that bad goal was something that impressed him.
  “Routine shot from the slot that is a puck that he should have stopped, and he made the next 26 saves,” said McCrimmon, “That was the final goal that Saskatoon scored and he demonstrated some mental toughness to push back in that situation, which is really important to see.”
  Quenneville’s 5-on-3 power-play goal at 7:39 of the 2nd period tied the game 2-2 and Shmyr then gave the Wheat Kings their first lead of the game with his second of the contest on a Brandon power-play just under two minutes later.
   Shmyr has been playing right-wing on a line with Wheat Kings’ leading scorer Tim McGauley and the dynasmic Rihards Bukarts since Brandon returned from the Christmas break, and the 2012 first round draft pick is fitting in quite well.
  “Tim and Rihards have been good for Braylon, I think they’re helping and I think they like him,” said McCrimmon, “I think he’s complementing them well.”
  The Wheat Kings have won four in a row since returning from a ten-day Christmas break, and have outscored their opponents 16-5 in the process.
  It’s those five goals against in four games that has been particular impressive for a Wheat Kings’ team that was middle of the pack in goals against in the first half of the season.
Braylon Shmyr had the first multi-goal
game of his WHL career.
  “I think just awareness by our players, a little more respect to the defensive side of the game and doing some things defensively that aren’t going to take away from our team offensively and, in fact, will make it better offensively,” said McCrimmon, “I think we’re spending more time in the offensive zone which, by definition , means you’re not in your own end and that’s helping our cause as well.
  Thursday’s game between the Wheat Kings and the Blades was the only one in the WHL, which allowed Brandon to increase their lead in the Eastern Conference to six points over Medicine Hat.
  The Wheat Kings also moved to within one point of the Kelowna Rockets for first-place in the overall WHL standings.
Chaff...Brandon scratches Thursday were D Kale Clague (upper body), F Ty Lewis (healthy), D Ivan Provorov (WJHC) and F Jesse Gabrielle...Tyler Coulter had three assists in Thursday’s contest while Jayce Hawryluk had two assists to give him 149 career points...the Wheat Kings were #3 in the CHL Top-10 rankings that were released on Wednesday behind the OHL’s Oshawa Generals and the WHL’s Kelowna Rockets...Wawanesa product Jordan Thomson had an assist Thursday to give him five points in six games since returning to Saskatoon’s lineup.

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