|Rihards Bukarts (right) and Jayce Hawryluk had two goals |
and two assists each for Brandon on Saturday.
Jayce Hawryluk had two goals and an assist in the opening frame and finished with four points, giving the Florida Panthers’ second round pick five goals and two assists in two games since returning from a 13-game absence due to an upper body injury.
“We were real good in the first period. Gave up the goal on the first shift of the game but much different response (Saturday) night than was the case (Friday night),” said Brandon GM/Coach Kelly McCrimmon on CKLQ’s post-game show, “Opportunistic...we finished off some real nice plays offensively to build a lead.”
Rihards Bukarts also had two goals and two assists for the Wheat Kings to tie a career-high for points in a single game while Tim McGauley had two goals and an assist to extend his point-scoring streak to 16 games (12 G, 22 A).
McGauley’s first goal came on a penalty shot with 5:37 left in the second period while his second came 19 seconds into the third period.
Morgan Klimchuk had the other Brandon goal, with his marker coming at the 2:32 mark of the first period to pull Brandon back to even ground just over two minutes after Ryan Graham had opened the scoring for Saskatoon.
“That didn’t happen for us (Friday) night and, all of sudden, we were down two so it was a different game and when we were able to tie it right away,” added McCrimmon, “That erased a tough goal against to start the game and then we got our legs underneath us and played real well.”
Jordan Papirny made 30 saves in his 10th straight start in goal for the Wheat Kings and 50th start of the season.
The victory for Brandon (44-10-4-2) coupled with Kelowna’s 5-2 loss in Victoria Saturday night leaves the Wheat Kings two points behind the Rockets for first-place in the overall WHL standings.
Both teams have 12 games remaining in the regular season, with the Wheat Kings at home for their next four contests starting with Wednesday’s tilt against the Medicine Hat Tigers (7:00 p.m., Westman Communications Group Place).
Chaff...in addition to Shmyr, the Wheat Kings also scratched F Reid Duke (lower body), F Nolan Patrick (lower body), D Kale Clague (lower body), D Ivan Provorov (upper body), D Mark Taraschuk (personal), G Alex Moodie (upper body) and G Logan Thompson (illness)...McGauley now has 23 points (12 G, 11 A) in his last 14 games against the Blades, who selected him in the first round of the 2010 WHL Bantam Draft...former Brandon captain Ryan Pulock returned to the lineup for Bridgeport (AHL) Saturday after missing nearly six weeks with an upper body injury...former Wheat King Rob Klinkhammer signed a one-year contract extension with the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers on Friday.