With four games in five days, the La Ronge Ice Wolves used home ice to their advantage.
The Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League team is in the midst of a six-game homestand. Last week the Ice Wolves beat the Kindersley Klippers on back-to-back nights (7-3 and 4-1), upset league-leading Battlefords 2-1 in overtime, and romped past Yorkton, 6-1.
The squad’s four-game winning streak gave the team an 8-2-0-0 record in its last 10 games. Overall, the Ice Wolves sported a 14-7-1-0 record. They got by Flin Flon to top the Sherwood Division and sat second in the SJHL standings behind Battlefords. This coming weekend the Ice Wolves close out their homestand by hosting the Weyburn Red Wings on Friday and Saturday.
The Ice Wolves scored four times in the second period on Saturday on their way to a 6-1 win over Yorkton. In the contest, La Ronge was three-for-three on the powerplay and scored shorthanded. Putting the puck in the net for the Ice Wolves were Jacob Visentini (twice), Ryley Morgan, Kaycee Coyle, Trenton Curtis, and Connor Abric. Topher Chirico stopped 42 of the 43 shots he faced.
On Friday night, Morgan scored in overtime as the Ice Wolves topped the SJHL-leading North Stars, 2-1. Ethan Strik had opened the scoring in the second period to give La Ronge a 1-0 lead. In the third, Nikolas Smolinski knotted things up at 1-1. La Ronge goaltender Dawson Smith made 37 saves for his team in the win.
After holding a 1-0 first period lead, last Tuesday, the Ice Wolves scored three goals in each of the next two periods on their way to a 7-3 victory over the Klippers. Curtis scored a hat trick. In the second period, his third goal of the night put the hosts on top 4-3. The Ice Wolves scored three unanswered goals in the third. Scoring for La Ronge were Curtis (three), Abric, Dylan Handel, Strik, and Rylan Silzer. Smith made 40 saves.
The Ice Wolves led the Klippers 1-0 and 3-0 on Wednesday en route to a 4-1 win. Dallyn Peekeekoot, Walker Jerome, Morgan and Hunter Burgeson scored for La Ronge. Chirico stopped 32 shots.
Battlefords North Stars (18-0-2-1)
The North Stars remain unbeaten in regulation in the SJHL. They fell 2-1 overtime in in La Ronge on Friday. Morgan scored the game winner. Smolinski scored for Battlefords. Josh Kotai made 33 saves for the North Stars.
On the road Saturday, Battlefords beat Nipawin, 7-3. After a scoreless first period, the North Starts outscored the Hawks 4-2 in the second period and 3-1 in the third. Holden Doell and Kian Bell each scored twice for Battlefords. Bradley Blake, Steven Kesslering, and Ashtyn Shields also had goals for the North Stars. Justen Maric made 37 saves.
The North Stars open a five-game homestand by hosting the Flin Flon Bombers on Friday and Saturday.
Kindersley Klippers (4-9-0-4)
The Kindersley Klippers fell 5-4 in a shootout in Nipawin on Friday. The Hawks were able to tie the game at 4-4 in the third period. No Klippers were able to score in the shootout, while Reid Mackay had Nipawin’s goal. For Kindersley, Logan Falk made 29 goals.
The Klippers fell twice in La Ronge last week. Logan Cox scored two of Kindersley’s goals in a 7-3 loss last Tuesday. Cash Arntsen also lit the lamp. In 4-1 loss on Wednesday, Tylin Hilbig had the team’s goal. Cody Jaman made 42 saves for the Klippers.
The Klippers host the Nipawin Hawks for games on Friday and Saturday.
Humboldt Broncos (14-6-0-0)
In their lone game last week, the Broncos beat Notre Dame, 4-1, at home. That halted a three-game losing streak.
Cage Newans’ powerplay marker put the Broncos up 1-0 in the first period last Wednesday. Goals by Matthew Van Blaricom and Samuel Marburg, shorthanded, increased the Broncos’ lead to 3-0. The Hounds got on the board, but Tristan Serraro scored for Humboldt to create the final score. Both Serraro and Van Blaricom scored their first SJHL goals. Van Blaricom was called up from the U18 AAA Tisdale Trojans for the game. Tristan Boileau made 36 saves.
The Broncos are in Wilcox on Wednesday to play the Hounds. On Saturday and Sunday, the team hosts Melfort and Flin Flon, respectively.
Melville Millionaires (6-13-1-1)
In spite of a furious third period comeback, Melville fell 4-3 at home Friday to Notre Dame. Scoring for Melville were Kayden Skulmoski, Colby Ball, and Noah Wills. Kelton Pyne made 30 saves.
In spite of a three-goal third period explosion, the Millionaires fell 5-3 on the road to the Estevan Bruins last Wednesday. The Melville team trailed Estevan 1-0 after the first period and 2-0 following the second. Nathan Fox, Nicholas Andrusiak, and Zach Cain all scored in the third for Melville. Millionaires goalie Kelton Pyne made 18 saves.
The Millionaires hosts the Estevan Bruins on Friday.
The Melville team added 20-year-old forward Isaac Suppin from the Alberta Junior Hockey League’s Drayton Valley Thunder. The Kelowna product had four goals and five points in 16 games for the Thunder this season.
Nipawin Hawks (8-10-1-1)
Mackay was the lone shooter out of eight to score in the shootout on Friday. That gave the Hawks a 5-4 win over the visiting Klippers. Nipawin had led 2-1 after the first period, but Kindersley tied things up at 3-3 after two. Each team scored once in the third with Alex Johnson’s third of the season knotting the score at 4-4. Jackson Fellner made 24 saves for Nipawin.
The Hawks lost 7-3 to Battlefords on Saturday. The contest was scoreless after one period. Battlefords took a 4-2 lead in the second frame. Scoring for Nipawin were Zander Stewart, Mackay, and Francois Xavier-Bedard. Jackson Fellner had 33 saves for Nipawin.
The Hawks host Flin Flon on Tuesday. On Friday and Saturday, the team plays in Kindersley.
Notre Dame Hounds (8-10-1-1)
The Hounds held off Melville 5-4 on the road on Friday. For Notre Dame, Jacob Ligi scored in the first period and Dane Probe in the second. In the final frame, Antoine Saint-Onge but the visitors up 3-0, but Melville got back one goal. Carson Baylis once again made it a three-goal lead for the Millionaires, 4-1, but Melville scored twice more. Hounds goalie Johan Tremblay-Kay made 22 saves.
The Notre Dame squad lost 4-1 last Wednesday to Humboldt. Defenceman Sam Kroon scored for Notre Dame in the third period.
On Wednesday, the Hounds host the Humboldt Broncos. The team heads to Yorkton on Friday.
Melfort Mustangs (9-8-4-0)
The Mustangs galloped to two wins over the Estevan Bruins last week.
With a trio of first period markers and two second session goals, the Mustangs romped to a 6-2 victory over Estevan on the road last Friday. Scoring for Melfort were Ashton Taylor (two), Leyton Holoien, Zac Somers, Clarke Huxley, and Kevin Minnoch. Mustangs goalie James Venne made 26 saves.
Two first period powerplay markers helped propel the Melfort club to a 4-0 first period lead on Saturday. The squad went onto win 6-1. Venne allowed only one goal on 23 shots. Estevan’s lone goal came on a powerplay. Lighting the lamp for the Mustangs were Boston Maxwell, Dawson Leroux, Ryan Dugay, Sommers, Logan Belton, and Ashton Taylor.
The Mustangs host the Weyburn Red Wings on Wednesday. The team plays in Humboldt on Saturday