The Brandon Wheat Kings head into their home game against the Saskatoon Blades on Tuesday with momentum on their side.
Corbin Boes made 43 saves and Nick Walters ended a 12-round shootout as the Wheat Kings edged the Blades 3-2 Saturday night in Saskatoon.
It was the first meeting between the teams since the Wheat Kings dealt homegrown star Mike Ferland to the Memorial Cup hosts and it ran Brandon’s record to 3-1 since the Western Hockey League trade deadline.
"Obviously (the Blades are) a quality club and we all know where they’re going to be at the end of the season," said Wheat Kings assistant coach David Anning. "It’s not an easy building to come into and we think that we did a good job. It’s nice to be rewarded tonight after playing well (in a 3-2 loss to the Prince Albert Raiders on Friday)."
Colton Waltz and Tim McGauley scored in regulation as the Wheat Kings (17-26-2-2) moved into sole possession of 11th place in the Eastern Conference. McGauley pounced on a rebound to tie the game with 4:15 left to play in the third period. The Blades (22-20-0-3) held leads of 1-0 and 2-1 on goals by Collin Valcourt and Lukas Sutter.
McGauley added a key goal in the shootout, beating Saskatoon goalie Andrey Makarov on Brandon’s sixth attempt to keep his team alive after Shane McColgan scored to give the Blades the upper hand. Walters, a defenceman with only seven goals in three WHL seasons, put the game away by scoring on a deke to end the longest shootout in Wheat Kings history.
The real star of the show was Boes, who gave up only one goal in the shootout to earn his first win since Dec. 8. Boes and Curtis Honey, who started Brandon’s previous three games, have combined to post a 1.97 goals-against average and a .937 save percentage since the trade deadline.
"We have two guys that are playing well here," Anning said. "Boesy stepped up tonight and got the job done. I think overall our team defence is improving … and both guys have stepped up when we needed them. It’s nice to have a tandem you can rely on and I think the group has confidence in both guys right now."
<B>ONE-TIMERS: Tuesday’s game starts at
7 p.m. at Westman Place … Ferland and the Blades’ other former Wheat King, C <B>Brenden Walker, were both held off the scoresheet on Saturday and were stopped on Saskatoon’s first two shootout attempts … Makarov made 31 saves in regulation and OT … Brandon was 0-for-3 on the power play and killed off all four Saskatoon power plays, including a two-man advantage in the second period that lasted 1:25 … Brandon scratched D <Bt-5>Ryan Pulock (wrist, two weeks), LW/RW <B>Richard Nejezchleb (hand, two weeks), C<B> Tyrel Seaman (concussion, indefinite) and C/LW <B>John Quenneville (groin, day-to-day).<t$>