A slow start from the home team and a solid goaltending performance from Chet Pickard powered the Tri City Americans to a 2-1 win over the Broncos last night.
I was really impressed with how the Americans played off the hop. They were working hard and looked to be the hungrier team after taking a 5-1 loss in their previous game in Saskatoon.
With the 'Ams up 2-1, goaltender Chet Pickard made life simple in the crease as he controlled some big blasts and never gave the Broncos 2nd and 3rd opportunities. He showed why he will be one of the best 'tenders in the WHL this season. We gave him 1st star honours for his effort int the crease and his 31 save performance.
Matt Tassone was the only Bronco to score in what was a hard-hitting physical game at times. Tassone's goal helped the Broncos extend their streak of scoring at least a goal in the last 87 games. It's the WHL's longest current streak of not being shutout in a game amongst the 22 teams.
Speaking of streaks, Keegan Dansereau's seven game point streak came to an end. He still found a way to contribute and was the Broncos best forward. He played a physical style that drew some penalties and even tangled with the Americans' Mitch McColm in a 2nd period tilt.
Next up, the Broncos host the Kootenay Ice Saturday night in round two of the "Chynoweth Cup"
The Broncos added 18 year-old goaltender Joel Danyluk into the mix this week. The Yorkton, SK native has seen some WHL work with the Prince George Cougars but most recently has been skating with the Yortkon Terriers of the SJHL.
Travis Yonkman was our intermission guest last night and says his shoulder feels great. He says they will take it slow though to ensure a lesser chance of the shoulder being re-injured. He suffered a partial separation in Saskatoon September 27th. He's expecting to be back on the ice possibly next week.
During our pre-game show, Michael Wilson joined us on the phone from Worcester, MA where he is playing for the Sharks of the AHL.
Michael recently signed a contract with the San Jose's affiliate but it admits it wasn't something he was even thinking about this summer.
"I was all set up at UBC and was going to go to school and play hockey there. They (San Jose) called me and asked if I would attend their camp. From there I went to play in a rookie tournament in Las Vegas. They told me I was playing well and I went to main camp. I stayed around and watched some exhibition games. Pretty soon there was an offer out there so it was good." - Wilson
That's all I got in me today but.... there's something brewing in Moose Jaw it seems.
With the Warriors sending a pair of 20 year-olds to Chilliwack the question is what is their next move? Are they making room for the anticipated return of Jordan Knackstedt and then looking to add another impact 20... perhaps a goaltender? Are they going for a youth movement and want to clear up some ice-time for their younger players? Or simply do they just want an upgrade at their 20 year old position? Anyone of the three is a distinct possibility. I'm not even going to venture a guess either.
I do know this, the Warriors took a gamble last season acquiring Ty Wishart from Prince George and it didn't work. Too many good teams in the Eastern Conference and an 8th place showing meant a 1st round exit. The pundits would say the Warriors need to build around some exciting young talent in their line-up headlined by Quinton Howden and a solid group of 16 year-olds.
But, with the clock ticking on the new facility and the need to generate more pride and interest in a winning hockey team to spur ahead the plans, maybe Warriors GM Chad Lang gets after it again this season. Full steam ahead?