Halbgewachs hits 50 in Friday win

Marc Smith

The Moose Jaw Warriors got off to a hot start Friday in Regina and went on to a 5-3 win over the Pats at the Brandt Centre.

The Warriors stunned the sold out crowd at the Brandt Centre as they pushed the Pats hard in the opening period.  They were aggressive on the fore-check, they were creating turnovers and second opportunities, and outshot Regina 21-8 in the period.

Moose Jaw picked up the game’s first goal when they landed on an early power play.  Kale Clague took a shot from blueline that was deflected by Jayden Halbgewachs for his WHL leading 49th goal of the season.

Under two minutes later Tristin Langan and Tate Popple fought the puck away from the Pats inside the Regina right circle and then fed a wide-open Vince Loschiavo on top of the crease where he tucked in his 14th goal.

Back on the power play with under five minutes left in the period Dmitri Zaitsev snapped in his 5th of the year and then in the final minute of the period Tanner Jeannot knocked in his 32nd goal to make it 4-0.

The second period was much tighter right from the start of the frame.

The Warriors killed off a power play to start the period, but the Pats went back on the man-advantage a few minutes later with Jesse Gabrielle converting on a shot in the slot to get Regina on the board.

Moose Jaw found their stride as the period went on and put good pressure on the Pats over the second half of the frame, but they were stifled by Regina goalie Ryan Kubic, who kept it a three-goal game going into the third.

Jayden Halbgewachs wrote his name in to the Warriors history books 3:35 in to the 3rd period when a bouncing puck found its way to his stick and he rifled it in for his 2nd of the game to make it 5-1.

The goal was Halbgewachs’ 50th in 47 games which made him the fastest Warrior to 50 goals in franchise history.  He also joins Theo Fleury and Kent Hayes as the only players in Warriors history to record back-to-back 50-goal seasons.

Regina pulled back within three with a power play goal from Josh Muhura at 8:53 and then in the final minute of regulation Mahura scored his second of the game to claw the Pats within one but that would be as close as they would get.

Brody Willms made 42 saves and was named the game’s 1st Star, Vince Loschiavo had a goal and two points, and Brayden Burke and Kale Clague grabbed two assists each.

The Warriors will have Saturday off and then head to Saskatoon on Sunday to take on the Blades.  Catch all the action on Country 100 starting with the Westrum Lumber Timber Mart PreGame Show at 1:40pm.

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