Accessibility/Mobile Features
Skip Navigation
Skip to Content
Editorial News
Sports
Classified Sites

Brandon Sun - PRINT EDITION

Wheat Kings set to face Oil Kings

Captain Ryan Pulock and the Brandon Wheat Kings celebrated a series sweep of the Regina Pats in Round 1.

TIM SMITH/BRANDON SUN Enlarge Image

Captain Ryan Pulock and the Brandon Wheat Kings celebrated a series sweep of the Regina Pats in Round 1.

There are no illusions in the eyes of the Brandon Wheat Kings — or anyone else for that matter — about who the favourites are in their Western Hockey League second-round playoff series against the Edmonton Oil Kings.

After all, the Oil Kings were the top team in the Eastern Conference during the regular season, with a 50-19-2-1 record. They led the conference with 310 goals this season and surrendered only 179, the lowest mark of any team in the WHL. They’re experienced, too, having made it to the league final in each of the past two seasons, winning the Ed Chynoweth Cup in 2012.

"I think they’re a team that’s been consistent all year," Wheat Kings head coach and general manager Kelly McCrimmon said. "They’re a 100-point team, the top team in the conference and no real weaknesses to their team."

The Wheat Kings, on the other hand, finished 26 points behind the Oil Kings with a 34-29-6-3 record and waited until the last weekend of the regular season to squeak into the playoffs. While the Wheat Kings are one of the few teams on this side of the league that can score goals with Edmonton, the weaknesses in Brandon’s game are more obvious, with the team allowing 90 goals (269) more than its Alberta counterpart.

Still, coming off of a sweep of the East Division-leading Regina Pats in the conference quarter-finals, the Wheat Kings feel that they’re better prepared than ever to battle the conference’s reigning heavyweight, which was part of the reason it was so important that the team managed to climb into seventh place in the conference standings, rather than finishing eighth, which would have meant a first-round matchup with Edmonton.

"We’re a lot more prepared to take on a team like that now than we would have been first round," said Wheat Kings captain Ryan Pulock, an Eastern Conference first-team all-star on defence, who had two goals, two assists and a plus/minus of +5 in the first round of the playoffs.

"It definitely gets tougher as you go, but I think it’s the same for (the Oil Kings). The last series, I think guys learned a lot, (with) a lot of guys getting their first playoff experience."

The Oil Kings still have a wide advantage in playoff experience — 447 games played to 143 — with eight players who were on that 2012 championship squad which swept the Wheat Kings in the second round.

"Obviously it’s a challenge for us, but we’re excited for the challenge," said second-year forward Jayce Hawryluk, who led the Wheat Kings with five goals and 10 points in the first round, while tying linemate John Quenneville for the league’s best plus/minus at +9.

"They’re a team known for winning. Clearly last year they made it pretty far into the playoffs, but we’re excited, we’re all healthy and that’s huge for our team. If we can stay healthy throughout these playoffs, we’re fine."

Hawryluk’s comments on health are particularly important, because one key area where the Wheat Kings can hope to match their rival is with their top-to-bottom depth.

Brandon tied the Portland Winterhawks for the most 20-goal scorers in the WHL during the regular season with seven, two more than Edmonton. The Wheat Kings and Oil Kings both feature eight 40-point scorers, trailing only the Winterhawks (nine).

"(The Oil Kings have) got a lot of depth, but I think if you look at our team too, we’re pretty deep as well," said Pulock, whose team went 1-2-1-0 versus Edmonton this season. "We’ve got a lot of skill, right from our first line to our fourth line. Every line is going to be important for us. Everyone’s got to play their role, do their job, and I think if everyone can do that to their best capability, I think we’ll have a good matchup."

» rhenders@brandonsun.com

BRANDON vs. EDMONTON

(Best-of-seven conference semifinal)

Edmonton (1) vs. Brandon (7)

(All times Central)

Thursday’s Game

Brandon at Edmonton, 8 p.m.

Saturday’s Game

Brandon at Edmonton, 1 p.m.

Tuesday, April 8

Edmonton at Brandon, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, April 9

Edmonton at Brandon, 7 p.m.

Friday, April 11

x-Brandon at Edmonton, 8 p.m.

Monday, April 14

x-Edmonton at Brandon, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, April 16

x-Brandon at Edmonton, 8 p.m.

x-if necessary.

REGULAR SEASON SERIES

(Edmonton wins 3-1)

Oct. 2: Edmonton 3 at Brandon 4

Dec. 31: Brandon 4 at Edmonton 5 (OT)

Jan. 28: Brandon 2 at Edmonton 4

March 7: Edmonton 6 at Brandon 3

BRANDON WHEAT KINGS

(34-29-6-3, seventh in Eastern Conference)

Scoring GP G A P Pim +/-

Jayce Hawryluk 59 24 40 64 44 +16

Ryan Pulock 66 23 40 63 18 -4

Tim McGauley 68 21 39 60 21 -5

John Quenneville 61 25 33 58 71 +3

Richard Nejezchleb 66 32 25 57 75 -12

Rihards Bukarts 65 28 26 54 50 +2

Peter Quenneville 44 21 31 52 10 -11

Eric Roy 66 11 33 44 51 -9

Ryan Pilon 66 7 29 36 46 -13

Rene Hunter 63 4 30 34 70 0

Chad Robinson 72 7 25 32 31 -6

Jesse Gabrielle 49 12 14 26 68 -2

Jens Meilleur 67 11 15 26 15 +3

Quintin Lisoway 69 9 14 23 13 -2

Tyler Coulter 52 8 13 21 27 +2

Colton Waltz 66 2 17 19 54 -8

Ryley Lindgren 67 9 8 17 14 -26

Brett Kitt 37 5 5 10 42 -1

Taylor Green 65 0 10 10 56 +2

Braylon Shmyr 34 3 6 9 4 -3

Kord Pankewicz 35 0 8 8 53 +1

Nolan Patrick 3 1 0 1 0 +3

Kale Clague 2 0 0 0 0 0

Goaltending GP MP GA SO S% Avg

Jordan Papirny 46 2,636 144 1 .900 3.28

Curtis Honey 31 1,682 114 0 .888 4.07

Brandon Power Play:

79-for-305 (25.9 per cent, 2nd in WHL).

Brandon Penalty Killing:

188-of-250 (75.2 per cent, 18th in WHL).

EDMONTON OIL KINGS

(50-19-2-1, first in Eastern Conference)

Scoring GP G A P Pim +/-

Henrik Samuelsson 65 35 60 95 97 +35

Curtis Lazar 58 41 35 76 30 +41

MitchellMoroz 70 35 28 63 156 +25

Cody Corbett 65 17 44 61 37 +19

Edgars Kulda 66 30 30 60 57 +34

Reid Petryk 63 17 39 56 56 +29

Brett Pollock 71 25 30 55 36 +18

Ashton Sautner 72 8 34 42 26 +59

Riley Kieser 72 14 21 35 49 +25

DysinMayo 63 7 28 35 50 +17

Aaron Irving 63 9 21 30 88 +26

Mads Eller 54 8 15 23 54 +19

Blake Orban 67 5 17 22 137 +33

Griffin Reinhart 45 4 17 21 55 +20

Luke Bertolucci 63 6 14 20 21 +4

Brandon Baddock 56 6 11 17 128 +5

Lane Bauer 47 7 9 16 8 +5

Cole Benson 59 5 8 13 4 +2

Ben Carroll 52 2 9 11 13 +6

Brandon Ralph 46 8 2 10 34 +1

Jesse Mills 35 0 5 5 15 +8

Tyler Robertson 26 1 1 2 7 -2

Mitchell Walter 29 0 2 2 55 +4

Goaltending GP MP GA SO S% Avg

Tristan Jarry 63 3,703 138 8 .914 2.24

Tyler Santos 13 609 32 3 .889 3.15

Edmonton Power Play:

66-for-337 (19.6 per cent, 17th in WHL).

Edmonton Penalty Killing:

284-of-333 (85.3 per cent, 2nd in WHL).

Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition April 3, 2014

  • Rate this Rate This Star Icon
  • This article has not yet been rated.
  • We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high. If you thought it was well written, do the same. If it doesn’t meet your standards, mark it accordingly.

    You can also register and/or login to the site and join the conversation by leaving a comment.

    Rate it yourself by rolling over the stars and clicking when you reach your desired rating. We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high.

Sort by: Newest to Oldest | Oldest to Newest | Most Popular 0 Commentscomment icon

You can comment on most stories on brandonsun.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is register and/or login and you can join the conversation and give your feedback.

There are no comments at the moment. Be the first to post a comment below.

Post Your Commentcomment icon

Comment
  • You have characters left

The Brandon Sun does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. Comments are moderated before publication. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

There are no illusions in the eyes of the Brandon Wheat Kings — or anyone else for that matter — about who the favourites are in their Western Hockey League second-round playoff series against the Edmonton Oil Kings.

After all, the Oil Kings were the top team in the Eastern Conference during the regular season, with a 50-19-2-1 record. They led the conference with 310 goals this season and surrendered only 179, the lowest mark of any team in the WHL. They’re experienced, too, having made it to the league final in each of the past two seasons, winning the Ed Chynoweth Cup in 2012.

Please subscribe to view full article.

Already subscribed? Login to view full article.

Not yet a subscriber? Click here to sign up

There are no illusions in the eyes of the Brandon Wheat Kings — or anyone else for that matter — about who the favourites are in their Western Hockey League second-round playoff series against the Edmonton Oil Kings.

After all, the Oil Kings were the top team in the Eastern Conference during the regular season, with a 50-19-2-1 record. They led the conference with 310 goals this season and surrendered only 179, the lowest mark of any team in the WHL. They’re experienced, too, having made it to the league final in each of the past two seasons, winning the Ed Chynoweth Cup in 2012.

Subscription required to view full article.

A subscription to the Brandon Sun Newspaper is required to view this article. Please update your user information if you are already a newspaper subscriber.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

Brandon Sun Business Directory
Sudden Surge: Flood of 2014
Opportunity Magazine — The Bakken
Why Not Minot?
Welcome to Winnipeg

Social Media