Thursday, 12 March 2015

Wheat Kings Look to Join Elite Company

  This year's Brandon Wheat Kings look to join an elite group Friday night when they host the Saskatoon Blades (7:30 p.m., Westman Communications Group Place), as they look for their 50th win of the season.
 The 50th win would put this year's Wheat Kings' team in pretty elite company, as the club has reached that mark four previous times in their 48-year old history in the Western Hockey League.

The 1976-77 team to a 54-10-8 record and the Eastern Conference title, only to lose to the eventual Memorial
Cup champion New Westminster Bruins in the WHL Final.  The line of Ray Allison, Bill Derlago and
Brian Propp (pictured above) combined for 196 and 450 points and Glen Hanlon set a WHL record
with 49 wins in goal. 

  The 1978-79 Wheat Kings established a CHL record with 125 points and 58-5-9 record led by Brian Propp's 194 points
and Brad McCrimmon's 98 points from the back end.  That's year's team captured Brandon's first WHL title
and lost the 1979 Memorial Cup Final to the Peterborough Petes on Bob Atwell's overtime winner.

Led by future NHLers Mike LeClerc and Peter Schaefer up front and Wade Redden on the back-end, the 1995-96
Wheat Kings not only were a league-best 52-19-1 in the regular season but went 16-and-3 in the playoffs
en route to claiming the WHL title.  Along the way, the team won 23 straight games -- the
last 13 of the regular season and the first ten of the playoffs.

  The last of the 50-win campaigns came in Brandon's Memorial Cup host year of 2009-2010. 
A Brayden Schenn / Matt Calvert (pictured above) led group won their final eight games
of the regular season to finish at 50-18-1-3. 
That year's team lost in the eastern conference final and to the Windsor Spitfires in the Memorial Cup Final.

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