Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Oil Kings spoil robbery attempt by Flodell

Blades goalie makes 43 saves in 3-2 OT loss

Logan Flodell made 43 saves for the Blades.
    Logan Flodell almost singlehandedly ran the Saskatoon Blades winning streak to three games.
    The 19-year-old netminder stood on his head making 43 saves, but the visiting Edmonton Oil Kings exited Wednesday’s WHL contest at the SaskTel Centre with a 3-2 overtime victory. With the Blades holding a 2-1 lead, Oil Kings left-winger David Koch netted the equalizer at the 5:32 mark of the third period.
    He proceeded to pot the winner just 11 seconds into overtime on an odd man rush to deliver the visitors to victory.
    The Oil Kings started the contest by pinning the Blades in their own end and getting the first eight shots on goal. Flodell slammed the door to ensure the game remained scoreless.
    Momentum changed near the midway point of the frame, when the Blades scored twice on the power play with their first two shots on goal in the contest to go up 2-0.
    The first tally was a tick-tack-toe passing play that saw right-winger Josh Paterson tap home a backdoor feed from 16-year-old rookie Michael Farren. Just a minute after that goal, 16-year-old rookie right-winger Chase Wouters wired home his fourth of the season to give the hosts a two-goal edge.
    The Blades carried the play from that point until the momentum changed again, when Oil Kings Russian defenceman Anatolii Elizarov fired home a point shot through a screen with 45.2 seconds to play in the first period to cut Saskatoon’s lead to 2-1.
    The Oil Kings poured it on in the second earning four power-play chances and outshooting the Blades 19-7. Flodell stood his ground to ensure the hosts went into the second intermission with a one-goal edge, which also set the stage for Koch’s heroics.
The Oil Kings celebrate Davis Koch’s equalizer goal.
    Patrick Dea turned away 15 shots to pick up the win in goal for the Oil Kings.
    With the win, Edmonton improved to 15-15-3 to sit seventh overall in the WHL’s Eastern Conference and four points in front of the ninth place Blades, whose record moved to 13-18-3.
    Saskatoon sits a point behind the Brandon Wheat Kings (13-14-4) for the final playoff berth in the Eastern Conference. The Wheat Kings have three games in hand on the Blades. Those two teams face each other in a home-and-home series before embarking on the league’s Christmas break.
    The Blades and Wheat Kings play Friday in Brandon and go at it again on Saturday at 7 p.m. at the SaskTel Centre. Saturday’s contest is also the Blades “Teddy Bear Toss” game.

Blades deal captain to Spokane to get bigger

Blades captain Wyatt Sloboshan was traded to Spokane.
    At the conclusion of Wednesday’s game, the Blades dealt 19-year-old captain Wyatt Sloboshan to the Spokane Chiefs in a trade involving four players.
    Sloboshan, who stands 5-foot-10 and weighs 184 pounds, was sent to Spokane along with 18-year-old defenceman Nolan Reid, who stands 5-foot-10 and weighs 175 pounds, and a third round pick in the 2017 WHL Bantam Draft for 19-year-old defenceman Evan Fiala, who stands 6-foot-4 and weighs 205 pounds, overage forward Markson Bechtold, who stands 6-foot-1 and weighs 190 pounds, and a conditional sixth round WHL Bantam Draft selection.
    Sloboshan, who didn’t play Wednesday due to a lower body injury, has four goals and 12 assists in 30 games. Reid has played in all of the Blades 34 games this season collecting no goals and 11 assists.
    Fiala, who is a Saskatoon area product, has two goals and seven assists in 32 games. Bechtold has five goals and three assists in 13 games. The additions of Fiala and Bechtold give the Blades a boost in the size department.
    Fiala’s younger sister, Joelle, is a standout forward with the Saskatoon Stars of the Saskatchewan Female Midget AAA Hockey League.
    Bechtold’s addition gave the Blades four overage players. In order to get down to the league limit of three overagers, they placed centre Kolten Olynek on waivers. Olynek had seven goals and six assists this season playing 31 regular season games with both the Blades and the Prince Albert Raiders. The Blades originally claimed Olynek via waivers in early October.

Back in the Express with feature on Pats Hobbs

Connor Hobbs is having a stellar season with the Pats.
    I was back in the Saskatoon Express this week with a feature story on Regina Pats offensive defenceman Connor Hobbs.
    Hobbs, who is from Saskatoon, is having a stellar 19-year-old season piling up 13 goals, 23 assists and a plus-19 rating in the plus-minus department.
    He went into this season already having an NHL entry-level contract signed with the Washington Capitals.
    This season, Hobbs has helped the Pats jump out to a 21-2-6 start.
    The only disappointment Hobbs has suffered is the fact he wasn’t invited to the main training camp for Canada’s world junior team.
    The story on Hobbs can be found right here.

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