Monday, 23 May 2016

Knights, Wheat Kings Meet Monday

Tim McGauley (photo courtesy Rob Wallator/CHL)
  The Brandon Wheat Kings face off with the London Knights Monday night in their second game at the 2016 Memorial Cup in Red Deer (6:40 p.m., 880 CKLQ).

  The teams are coming off different results in their tournament openers, with the Knights rolling to a 6-2 win over host Red Deer on Friday night and Brandon dropping a 5-3 decision to Rouyn-Noranda on Saturday.

  That Saturday night loss included a strong third period for the Wheat Kings that saw them outshoot the Huskies 20-4 and score the only two goals.

  Brandon centre Tim McGauley says the team will need to build off that in Monday’s contest.

  “We have to build off the positives that we had our last game.  It wasn’t the game we really wanted but I thought our third period was really strong so we want to build off that and keeping going,” said McGauley, “Our team is ready for this next challenge.  We know we have to play our best...London is a good team so we have to go out their and play to the best of our abilities.”

  The Knights are led by the line of Mitch Marner, Christian Dvorak and Matthew Tkachuk, who combined for ten points in London’s opening game win over the Red Deer Rebels and had a conmbined 119 points in 18 games in the OHL playoffs.

  McGauley might see a lot of that threesome on Monday night, and he compared that challenge of trying to limit London’t high-scoring trio to what the Wheat Kings faced earlier in the WHL playoffs when matching up against Moose Jaw’s Brayden Point or Seattle’s Mathew Barzal.

  “I love playing against great players in this league.  They make you a better hockey player...the better the player, the better the tempo, the faster it’s going to be,” said McGauley, “I’m looking forward to it and I hope I can hold up my end of the bargain here.”

  While McGauley and linemates John Quenneville and Reid Duke are expected to go head-to-head with the Marner line, it’ll likely be a combined effort for the Wheat Kings.

  Brandon will be the visiting team, meaning London will have a chance to dictate the matchups by having last change.

  The Marner-Dvorak-Tkachuk trio is also known for taking extended shifts, meaning it might take more than a single shift playing against them for Brandon.

Chaff...the Wheat Kings’ practiced for about 45 minutes off-site at the Collicutt Centre on was the goal ‘heard around the world’, and Wheat Kings’ F John Quenneville spent a couple of minutes talking about his third period goal Saturday against Rouyn-Noranda with the Sportsnet panel during the first intermission on Sunday’s broadcast...former Wheat Kings’ captain Mark Stone and the Canadian team blanked Finland 2-0 in the gold medal game at the World Hockey Championship on Sunday...former Wheat King and 1991 Memorial Cup champion Trevor Kidd was a guest Sunday afternoon in a ‘Hot Stove’ interview in the FanFest area...Red Deer defeated Rouyn-Noranda 5-2 Sunday, leaving both teams with 1-and-1 records.

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