Lethbridge Hurricanes (6-20-3-2) vs. Kamloops Blazers (13-18-3-2)
A span of 46 seconds was the difference on Sunday night at the ENMAX Centre as the Kamloops Blazers scored three goals in a 46 second span at the end of the first period and went on to defeat the Lethbridge Hurricanes 4-2.
With the win, the Blazers snap a five game losing streak and extend the Hurricanes winless skid to six in a row. The win also ends a 10-game road losing streak for the Blazers.
After seeing Devan Fafard make his Hurricanes debut on Wednesday night, Sunday it was time for Brayden Burke to make his ‘Canes debut after they were both acquired from the Red Deer Rebels in the Riley Sheen trade. The ‘Canes also saw Lenny Hackman’s ironman streak end after 174 straight games played as he was a scratch from tonight’s game – the first game of his WHL career that he did not play in.
The Hurricanes played a strong first period under new head coach and general manager Peter Anholt who made his ‘Canes coaching debut. The ‘Canes were using their defense well on offense and were forechecking well on the attack causing havoc early for the Blazers defense. However, a five-on-three power play at the end of the first period saw the Blazers go on a run. With the two-man advantage, Collin Shirley sniped one off the crossbar and in to open the scoring, 1-0 Blazers. Just 32 seconds after that, Cole Ully beat Zac Robidoux high glove to make it 2-0 on the back half of the power play. While they were announcing the Ully goal, Shirley added another making it 3-0 for Kamloops after one period. Shots favoured the Blazers 17-7 in the first.
In the second period, the ‘Canes got on the board with a power play goal of their own as Zane Jones tapped home his team-leading 14th goal of the season – Kord Pankewicz and Kade Jensen picked up the helpers. Just over six minutes later, Jones was at it again beating Connor Ingram to make it a 3-2 game. However, less than a minute after Jones’ second goal, Ryan Rehill beat Robidoux on a long slapshot after a clean faceoff win by Matt Revel to make it 4-2 after forty minutes.
In the third, the ‘Canes had their chances to get back close in the game. The best chance came early as Nick Walters hit a goal post but stayed out. The ‘Canes pressed but could not solve Ingram, the Telus Cup winner with the PA Mintos this past season. Kamloops held on to win the game by a 4-2 count.
The final shots favoured the Blazers 41-20, but shots directed on net were close to even as the ‘Canes had a lot of their shots by Kamloops defenders.
The ‘Canes went 1/3 on the power play while the Blazers went 2/4 with the extra man.
1) Blazers – #15 Collin Shirley – (2 goals, including GWG)
2) ‘Canes – #26 Zane Jones – (2 goals)
3) Blazers – #24 Ryan Rehill – (1 goal)
The Hurricanes wrap up the unofficial “first half” of the season with a quick two game road trip. The ‘Canes will take on the Moose Jaw Warriors on Tuesday and the Regina Pats on Wednesday.