The Hawks came out decent in the first period but seemed to die off as the game went on, and Weyburn took advantage of it several times. Jordan Liem was one of a few bright spots for the Hawks, despite statistically only stopping 25 of 29. Jean-Phillipe Boucher of Quebec came in to his second game as a Red Wing and played strong and confident, making 30 stops for his second consecutive win.
Scoring was opened just prior to the 13:00 mark, when Ryan Ostertag and Miguel Pereira got away on a 2-on-1, with Pereira beating Liem off a cross-slot pass. Josh Lees picked up the second assist. 2:32 later, on the powerplay, Lane Harbor would roof a shot over a sprawling Liem with the assists to Sam Normandeau and Shain Scheschuk, who was ejected for a hit from behind on Brendan Hopkins who suffered an upper body injury on the play. 1:01 after the Wings went up a pair, Jesse Bernard would beat Boucher for 5th goal of the season, with Wheaton King and Jesse Williamson drawing helpers. The worst part of that goal was the broadcast was just coming back from commercial! The best part was the Hawks were within a goal late in the first. Shots in the 1st period were even at 10.
Weyburn really picked it up in the 2nd period and just under seven minutes in, Sam Williams capitalized on Jordan Liem, restoring the Red Wings 2 goal lead. Team scoring leader Miguel Pereira got an assist as well as Cody Fiala. Coming in to this game, the Red Wings powerplay was last place in the SJHL while the Hawks PK was 3rd, but the Wings got the edge with their 2nd powerplay goal of the night at the 15:11 mark when Sam Normandeau fired an absolute cannon from the point past Liem. Ryan Cooper and Lane Harbor had the assists on the 4-1 goal. After 2 periods, shots were 21-21 but the Red Wings had a 3 goal lead.
Looking to win their first road game of the season, the Hawks knew they needed a great 3rd period, but several Wings made great plays to preserve their lead. Their was a few sparks in this period as Dexter Bricker and Josh Lees agreed to drop the mitts inside of the Weyburn blue line and I'm not sure if Bricker fell of what but the fight ended moments in, no decision! After that, Arti Kalashnikov poked at a Wing on the bench, receiving 2-2 minute spearing penalties on the play, earning his spot in the press box tonight in Estevan. J-P Boucher made an unbelievable save on Yan, who I thought played a strong game for Nipawin. Shots in the third were 10-8 Nipawin, but they were unable to get any goals falling 4-1 to the previously weak Weyburn Red Wings. With the loss, the Hawks are now 6-6-0-2 and need a win tonight to stay above .500.
I thought the Hawks got strong games from Tayler Balog, Carter Coben and Carter Danczak, and I thought Yan Kalashnikov and Jesse Bernard also played good games. Coming in to their 2nd game of 3 in 3 nights, the Hawks need a much more widespread effort if they want to gain some confidence and catch up to the likes of Flin Flon and Humboldt. The Hawks lost Brendan Hopkins and Tad Kozun to injuries, and now have 5 forwards hurt and out of the lineup. Ian Bablitz played his 4th game of the season last night, and looked very comfortable and he will only continue to play better as he gets some games under his belt.
Tonight's game can be heard on CK750 and online at yourtownnews.ca as the Estevan Bruins host the Hawks for the first time this season(they return Feb. 9). The CK750 pregame show begins at 7:15 and puckdrop is 7:30! Tune in to the call with myself and Rod Peterson, who made his color debut last night and did a heck of a job!
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