MJHL ROUNDUP: Oil Kings wrap up impressive January
MJHL WEEKLY ROUNDUP
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VIRDEN OIL CAPITALS
The Oil Capitals (23-17-1-0) are now two points back of the OCN Blizzard (22-16-2-3) for the fourth and final playoff spot in the Manitoba Junior Hockey League’s West Division after winning seven straight games and going 9-1 in the month of January.
Their most recent triumph came Saturday in a 3-2 road affair with the Winnipeg Freeze (3-36-2-0). Ethan Guthrie had two assists for Virden, who got goals from Trevor Hunt, Nolan Chastko and Roux Bazin to go along with a 17-save outing from Owen LaRocque.
On Friday, the Oil Capitals picked up a 4-1 win at Tundra Oil & Gas Place over the Freeze. Dean Gorchynski led the way with a pair of helpers, while Joey Bielik had a goal and an assist each.
Colten Miller, Andrew Blocker and Josh Lehto each found the back of the net and Eric Reid stopped 22 shots.
The Oil Capitals, who kicked off last week with a 4-1 home victory over the Selkirk Steelers (14-23-3-1) on Wednesday, head out on the road Friday to face the Blizzard. A rematch is set for Saturday night in Virden.
A pair of wins over the Blizzard at Credit Union Place moved the Kings (24-14-2-1) into a tie for first in the West Division with the Swan Valley Stampeders (23-14-4-1) and the Waywayseecappo Wolverines (23-12-3-2).
Deepkaran Hans had a goal and an assist for the defending Turnbull Cup champions on Sunday as they picked up a 2-1 victory on home ice.
Blake Boudreau also scored and Cole Sheffield made 36 saves for Dauphin as they extend their win streak to four games.
On Friday night, Nicholas Hatton found the back of the net and dished out a helper in a 5-2 Kings triumph. Alex Senf, Mathew Gough, Jayden Harris and Nolan Wickham rounded out the scoring.
Goaltender Dmytro Kubrytskyi made 30 saves in his MJHL debut. The 20-year-old from Kyiv, Ukraine, spent the last month with his country’s under-25 program during their exhibition series with Canada West schools and at the World University Games in Lake Placid, N.Y.
The Kings return home Friday to take on the Niverville Nighthawks (20-17-1-3). A rematch is slated for Sunday in Niverville.
After snapping a three-game losing streak last Tuesday with a 3-0 home win over the Freeze and edging out the visiting Nighthawks in a 4-3 shootout affair Thursday, the Wolverines came out on the wrong end of a wild 8-5 affair in Niverville Saturday.
Waywayseecappo held a 4-1 lead early in the second period, but could only watch on as the Nighthawks scored five goals in the rest of the middle frame to take a lead they would never relinquish.
Boone Mathison had a pair of goals for the Wolverines, while Leyton Smith and Guerin Apperley each had two-assist nights.
Carson Baptiste had a goal and an assist each, Sean Williams and Cody Blight both lit the lamp, and Tresor Wotton made 21 saves.
The Wolverines travel to Selkirk on Friday to take on the Steelers. The two sides square off again Saturday at the Waywayseecappo Arena Complex.
It was a tough weekend for the Titans as they dropped a 4-2 decision on the road and a 3-1 contest at home to the Winkler Flyers (26-10-5-1).
Hayden Stocks had the lone goal during Saturday’s game in Neepawa, which also saw Gavin Renwick turn aside 22 shots.
Connor Thompson paced the offence a night earlier with two assists. Cody Gudnason and Will Highet both scored and Mason Lobreau made 29 saves.
The Titans have now dropped four games in a row and are six points back of the Blizzard for the final playoff spot in the West Division.
They return to the Yellowhead Centre Friday to take on the Steinbach Pistons (31-10-0-0), who are tied with the Portage Terriers (30-9-1-1) for first place in the East Division.
A rematch is set for Saturday in Steinbach.
ICINGS: Players from all 13 MJHL teams are in Winnipeg today and Wednesday for the league’s annual showcase with the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League. The first three editions of the event were held in Regina from 2018 to 2020 … Winkler Flyers forward Zach Nicolas has committed to the NCAA’s Colgate Raiders. The 18-year-old Winnipeg product has 36 points – 17 goals and 19 assists – in 43 games for the Flyers after spending last season with the Northern Cyclones of the United States Premier Hockey League.
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