Despite being a battered group, the Brandon Wheat Kings managed to extend their Manitoba AAA Midget Hockey League winning streak to 11 games on Sunday afternoon at the Sportsplex.
Brandon dressed only 16 skaters with Robert Hechler (concussion), Ty Lewis (leg) and Mitch Lyall (shoulder) out with injuries. The Wheaties then lost Matthew Gerdis to a concussion in Sunday’s 3-1 victory over the Eastman Selects (11-6-4), but the league-leading Wheat Kings (20-2-0) were still able to roll three lines because they had called up forward Brendan Kokorudz.
Things looked bleak for the Wheat Kings as they trailed 1-0 heading into the third period despite outshooting Eastman 28-15, but the team rallied and got goals from Duncan Campbell, Zach Whitecloud and Troy Heywood in the final frame to come out on top.
“I’m really proud of our guys,” Wheat Kings head coach Ken Schneider said. “I think the nucleus of our team cares a lot and as a team we care about each other. That sort of shows itself when you get into these situations and have to find ways to win.
“The easier way would be to say we’re down guys and won’t be able to play as well, but I think it speaks volumes about our core group of people.”
Tyler Gutenberg made 21 saves for Brandon. Kirklan Lycar, a prospect of the Western Hockey League’s Wheat Kings, was the only player to beat Gutenberg on the day. Mario Petit stopped 33 shots for Eastman.
Elsewhere on Sunday, it was: Southwest Cougars 2, Pembina Valley Hawks 1; and Winnipeg Thrashers 4, Yellowhead Chiefs 0.
On Saturday, it was: Chiefs 4, Selects 2; Thrashers 3, Cougars 2.
Cougars 2 Hawks 1
In Pilot Mound, Tanner Lewis scored a power-play marker to tie the game in the second period for Southwest (11-10-1), and Carter Cowlthorp netted the game-winner in the third. Jordan McCallum opened the scoring 27 seconds into the middle frame for the Hawks (12-8-1).
Thrashers 4 Chiefs 0
In Shoal Lake, Nolan Patrick, a prospect of the WHL’s Wheat Kings, scored a pair of goals and set up another for the Thrashers (13-3-2). Luke Zacharias made 35 saves for the Chiefs (10-10-0).
Chiefs 4 Selects 2
In Shoal Lake, winning goaltender Brett Friesen made 47 saves and Tanner Koroscil led the Chiefs’ offence with two goals and an assist. Morgan Geekie added a goal and an assist, while Logan Robinson rounded out the Yellowhead scoring.
Thrashers 3 Cougars 2
In Souris, Connor Barley scored the winning goal and added an assist for the Thrashers. Patrick also scored for Winnipeg. Brandon Masson set up goals by Jared Janke and Braden Billaney for the Cougars, who got 34 saves from Josh Diaz.
» Brandon Sun
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition December 2, 2013