Warriors soar on Snowbirds Night
Mosaic Place was the site of the WHL’s marquee matchup as the Moose Jaw Warriors and Swift Current Broncos renewed their rivalry. It was a hard fought game for 60 minutes with the Warriors coming out on top 4-2 on their 7th Annual Snowbird Night.
With one point separating these two teams in the East Division standing a tight, fast, emotional, and entertaining game was expected and that’s what fans got in the opening period.
Five minutes in to the game the Warriors forward Vince Loschiavo dug the puck from the right Broncos wall to the point for Oleg Sosunov. The import defenseman put a shot on net that trickled past Stuart Skinner and sat on the goal line, Branden Klatt crashed the net and tapped in his 4th goal of season.
Moose Jaw added to their lead at 16:20 while working on the power play.
Justin Almeida controlled the puck on top of the right circle and found a seam to the left circle for Brett Howden. The Captain quickly moved the puck to the goal line for Jayden Halbgewachs who charged the net and lifted a back hand past Skinner for his 67th goal.
The emotional battles continued in the second period as the teams battled up and down the ice.
At 7:36 Barrett Sheen came across the Swift Current left line and set up Justin Almeida on the right wing. Almeida let a quick shot go that beat Skinner glove side, his 41st goal gave the Warriors a 3-0 lead.
Almeida’s goal also chased Skinner from the game, the Broncos starting goalie allowed three goals on 21 shots.
The Broncos pushed hard to start the third period as they looked desperate to get back in the game. Just over two minutes in to the period the got some life with a goal from Kaden Elder.
As the battles continued throughout the remainder of the game the Warriors found some insurance at 11:03.
Justin Almeida poked the puck away from the Broncos high in their zone and it came down the left boards to Tristin Langan.
Langan skated to the goal line and then fed Branden Klatt inside the left circle where he one-timed the puck over Joel Hofer for his second of the game.
Swift Current didn’t fade away and on the power play in the final three minutes of regulation they pulled their goalie to make it a 6-on-4. Colby Sissons let a shot go from the point that was deflected by Beck Malenstyn to make it a two goal game again.
In the final moments the Warriors held their ground and didn’t allow much for the Broncos and Moose Jaw skated to the 4-2 win.
Klatt finished with two goals, Justin Almeida picked up a goal and three points, Tristin Langan had two assists, and Brody Willms made 21 saves. Moose Jaw was 1-for-8 on the power play and 4-for-5 on the penalty kill.
The win moves the Warriors record to 50-15-1-2 and marks the first time in franchise history that they reached the 50 milestone. It also give them a three point lead on Swift Current for top spot in the East Division.
Moose Jaw’s busy weekend wraps up Sunday with an afternoon tilt against the Brandon Wheat Kings at Mosaic Place. Catch all the action on Country 100 starting with the Westrum Lumber Timber Mart PreGame Show at 3:40pm.
Tickets are available at www.mjwarriors.ca or at the Mosaic Place Box Office.