Cranbrook - It wasn't a bad effort.
The only problem is, a monumental effort and a few breaks are required to beat the Tigers in their barn. Medicine Hat improved to 29-3-2 in at "The Arena" with a 3-0 workmanlike effort. The win was also Medicine Hat's 50th win of the season tying them with Everett who were upset on home ice by Portland 5-2
The Broncos played a good opening 15 minutes and may have been out chancing Medicine Hat when the Chris Stevens slid his team leading 31st goal of the season just as a Broncos penalty expired.
The Broncos weren't getting 2nd and 3rd chances because of Matt Keetley's play in goal or their defense clearing rebounds and supporting their goaltender.
Early in the 2nd, the Tigers made it 2-0 on a quick centering feed in front Tyler Ennis. Late in the period Jakub Rumpel knocked home a rebound on a quick shot from Chris Stevens.
The third period was uneventful. Not a lot of chances either way as the Tigers posted the 3-0 victory.
The Broncos highlight of the night may have come in a spirited scrap between Brady Leavold and Tigers' super-pest Derek Dorsett.
"I asked him to go at the face-off, we won the draw and I thought we were going to score." said Leavold post-game. "We went up the ice together and then we went."
The two middle-weights traded some hard rights, it was only when Leavold switched to lefts that the fight turned to Leavold's favor. Leavold caught him at the end putting him down to fire up the Broncos' bench. Dorsett never returned. It was after we found out he may have broken his hand. Looks like the Tigers leading scorer could be out of the line-up for a bit.
The team arrived in Cranbrook at about 4:20am mountain time. They actually beat the Kootenay Ice home by a half hour from their game in Red Deer. They blanked the Rebels 4-0.
All three teams chasing the Broncos in the east division lost. Brandon blanked Saskatoon 4-0, Tri City rallied to beat Moose Jaw 5-2 and Regina smoked Prince Albert 8-2. So the Broncos can at least turn their negative result in Medicine Hat into a positive. Regina also clinched a playoff spot with the win.
Here's how the standings in the east look:
Broncos 59pts - 7 games remaining
Raiders 56 pts - 8 games remaining
Warriors 51 pts - 8 games remaining
Saskatoon 50 pts - 9 games remaining
All four teams are on the ice tonight.
The Blades appear almost out of it. They still have to hit the road for four games through the Central division.
Geordie Wudrick is set to return to the team from the Canada Winter Games today although it's unsure whether he'll play or not.
We're on the air tonight at 7:30pm with the pre-game show at 8pm. Tonight's guest on the pre-game show will be former Broncos and Ice defenseman Donny Lloyd. Lloyd was just named the AJHL's defenseman of the year in Grande Prairie.
The Kyle Moir watch is on. If he starts tonight or sees action at anytime, he will tie Jeff Calvert's CHL mark for most games played as a goaltender at 229.
Time for a nap or workout, hmmm. Easy decision.