Weekend opens with narrow loss in Brandon

Chelsea Kemp/Brandon Sun

Moose Jaw pushed hard in the third period to erase a 3-goal deficit but just game up short falling 3-2 to the Brandon Wheat Kings at Westoba Place.

Throughout the opening period, the Warriors had their opportunities to get on the scoreboard.  Their fore-check pressed the Wheat Kings and quick puck movement resulted in sustained pressure at times.

As well, the forwards did a nice job digging the puck from low in the Brandon zone and feeding the defencemen at the blueline who in turn were able to get a number of shots through which led to a 12-7 advantage on the shot clock in the opening period.

However, the Wheat Kings picked up the only goal of the period when former Warriors Luka Burzan set up Baron Thompson on the right side of the Moose Jaw crease and his shot with just under five minutes left in the frame gave Brandon a 1-0 lead.

In the second period, the Warriors weren’t able to come up the ice cleanly which led to broken rushes while the Wheat Kings were able to come up with a consistent attack.

Brodan Salmond did everything he could to keep his team in the game throughout the second period as Moose Jaw was outshot 19-5 in the period.

Brandon extended their lead in the second period when Luka Burzan scored at 11:32 and then with 21 seconds left in the period Caiden Daley scored on a 5-on-3 power play to make it 3-0 going into the second intermission.

Down to start the third period the Warriors started found another gear as they were able to have a more consistent presence inside the Wheat Kings zone and were able to outshoot Brandon 15-10 in the period.

Seven minutes in to the frame the Warriors were on the power play and attacking the Brandon net.  Just as the Brandon player stepped on the ice to end the man advantage Dalton Hamaliuk took a shot from the right line that found its way to the back of the net to get Moose Jaw on the board.

With just over five minutes remaining in the period and the Warriors back on the attack Tyler Smithies dug the puck from the Brandon right corner to Alek Sukunda at the blueline.

The 17-year-old rookie defenceman let a hard low shot go from the point and Tate Popple was able to deflect it past the Brandon goalie to pull the Warriors to within one.

Moose Jaw had their chances in the remaining moments of regulation but wasn’t able to pick up an equalizer which led to the narrow loss.

20-year-old goalie Brodan Salmond made 31 saves while 19-year-old Dylan Myskiw made 30 for Brandon.

Brandon had a 34-32 edge on the shot clock while the Warriors were 0-for-7 on the power play and 3-for-4 on the penalty kill.

These two teams will close out their 2018 PreSeason schedule Sunday with a rematch at Mosaic Place starting at 4pm.  The Warriors Office will be open from 1pm to 4pm for season ticket holders to pick up their packages.

Catch all the action on Country 100 starting with their shortened PreGame Show beginning at 3:55pm.

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