Two series has ended, one other maybe done before the weekend is up and one looks like it could go the distance.
It was a bit of a suprise that the Edmonton Oil Kings made it to the Final Four. Bigger surprise yet, they have done it in a sweep of the Hitmen of Calgary. After overtime games in Edmonton and then Calgary, it was a 6-0 loss that moved Edmonton closer to a WHL Championship.
Jack McNaughton had gone the distance for the Hitmen except for the final frame where Carl Stankowski took over. Dylan Myskiw went the distance for Edmonton in his age-19 season.
Dylan had been a backup in Brandon last year and has made incredible strides since coming to the Oil Kings.
Spokane has almost eliminated Everett from the postseason after three straight wins. Worse yet for the Silvertips is that they might have played their last game at home. With the Cirque du Soleil invading the Everett arena, the series has gone to a 2-3-2 format. After Everett lost the last pair of games, the Chiefs won a 3-1 game in Spokane and have two more games to play in Spokane to finish off the Tips. The Silvertips, who were the US Division champions, have used Dustin Wolf to stem the flow but to no avail. Spokane has countered with Bailey Brkin, who has been stellar in his games thus far.
Vancouver is one away from a clean sweep of Victoria. Though two kames including the last one were decided in overtime, it has been the shots on goal that have really separated the teams. Even the last overtime game saw 57 shots by Vancouver to just 20 for the Royals and even in overtime where the shots are usually a shot or two difference, the Giants had 15 to 5 for Victoria. Despite the losses, it has been the play of goaltender Griffin Outhouse for Victoria, who has kept his team in the game. In the fourth game, Vancouver scored three times in ten minutes to take a 3-0 lead heading into the second. Most likely, Vancouver will move on.
After two strong games in Prince Albert, the Raiders called on the Calvary to lead them on the road to Saskatoon. All emergency vehicles were represented as they had a parade in Prince Albert with the bus in the rear of the cavalcade. The Blades of Saskatoon were none impressed. In the first of two in Saskatoon, the Blades scored early in the first period and claimed a 1-0 win over the Raiders. Both goaltenders were strong for their teams and the four penalties called in the game didn’t see either team score with the man advantage. The next game was a little more lively. Though Prince Albert scored early in the first period, two goals in the second period and two in the third including one into the empty net put the Blades on even ground as both teams will have to go as far as a game six and might have to go to a seventh. There were many more shots on net as the Raiders led 45-38 and the Blades scored once on the power play on five chances, Prince Albert was blanked on their four-man advantage opportunities.
Interesting in that the home team has won each of the pair of games, which would favor the Raiders as they hold the seventh game.
In Winterhawks news, Joachim Blichfeld returned to Denmark to play for the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF). His heading there means he will not suit up for the San Jose Barracuda in the playoffs; Blichfeld will join the San Jose Sharks for the upcoming season where it will be decided if he plays there or the AHL with the Barracuda.