FRIDAY NIGHT WHL HOCKEY ON SHAWNov 09, 2012 - 05:44 MST
GIANTS HOST WINTERHAWKS LIVE ON SHAW – Marek Tvrdon and the Vancouver Giants (5-12-0-0) take on Ty Rattie and the Portland Winterhawks (13-3-1-0) for a Western Conference battle on Friday night in Vancouver, B.C.
Friday’s match-up between the Giants and Winterhawks can be seen live throughout western Canada on SHAW and SHAW Direct channel 299 (7:30pm PT).
The Giants just came home from a five-game eastern road trip that saw them post a 2-3 record, culminating with a 9-1 loss in Kennewick to the Tri-City Americans on Sunday, and currently sit in 10th place in the Western Conference. The Giants are 3-6-0 on home ice this season. Tvrdon has scored six goals over his last six games.
The Winterhawks are coming off a 5-1 victory over the visiting Red Deer Rebels on Tuesday night for their ninth straight victory, and currently lead the U.S. Division. The Winterhawks have piled up 49 goals over their last nine games. Rattie is currently enjoying an 11-game point streak, having racked up 12 goals and 23 points in that span.
It’s the first meeting of the season between the Winterhawks and Giants. The Giants won three of four meetings versus the Hawks last season.
Elsewhere on Friday night, Ryan Pulock and the Brandon Wheat Kings (9-7-2-1) host Sam Mckechnie and the Lethbridge Hurricanes (11-7-1-1).
The Wheat Kings are coming off a 5-3 victory over the visiting Seattle Thunderbirds on Tuesday for their second win over their last three games, and currently sit in second place in the East Division. Pulock (8g-13a) ranks second on the Wheat Kings in scoring with 21 points.
The Hurricanes downed the visiting Victoria Royals 4-2 on Wednesday night in Lethbridge for their third win in a row and their seventh win over their last nine games, and have climbed to third place in the Central Division. Mckechnie scored his 10th goal of the season on Wednesday versus Victoria.
In Calgary, AB, Brooks Macek and the Calgary Hitmen (12-4-1-2) welcome Brandon Magee and the Victoria Royals (9-9-0-0) on Friday night.
The Hitmen are coming off a pair of victories over the Moose Jaw Warriors over the last four days, and have won four straight games to move back into first place in the Central Division. Macek has four goals and five points over his last four games.
The Royals suffered their fifth straight loss with Wednesday’s 4-2 defeat to the Hurricanes in Lethbridge, and currently sit in third place in the B.C. Division. Magee scored his team-leading ninth goal of the season on Wednesday in Lethbridge.
In Kelowna, B.C., Myles Bell and the Kelowna Rockets (11-6-1-1) take on Tyson Ness and the Red Deer Rebels (10-10-1-1) on Friday.
The Rockets edged the visiting Edmonton Oil Kings 3-2 on Wednesday night, stretching their winning streak to four games. Kelowna boasts a 6-2-0 record on home ice this season.
The Rebels pulled off a 4-2 win over the Silvertips in Everett on Wednesday night to improve to 2-2 through four games of a five-game western road trip. Red Deer’s penalty killing unit is operating at 87.7% efficiency on the road this season.
In Medicine Hat, AB, Curtis Valk and the Medicine Hat Tigers (10-9-1-0) host Morgan Rielly and the Moose Jaw Warriors (7-7-3-3) on Friday night.
The Tigers managed a 4-1 win over the Kootenay Ice on Sunday for their sixth victory over their last seven games, and currently sit in fourth place in the Central Division. Valk leads the Tigers in scoring with 14 goals and 30 points this season.
The Warriors suffered a 2-1 shootout loss in Calgary on Wednesday night for their second straight loss to the Hitmen by that score line and their sixth straight loss overall. Four of the Warriors’ six losses on their current losing skid have come in overtime or a shootout.
In Prince Albert, SK, Mark McNeill and the Prince Albert Raiders (12-5-0-2) host Shea Theodore and the Seattle Thunderbirds (8-9-1-0) on Friday.
The Raiders skated to a 6-5 win over the visiting Swift Current Broncos on Wednesday night for their fifth victory over their last seven games, and remain in first place in the East Division. McNeill is coming off a four-point outing (1g-3a) on Wednesday night versus Swift Current.
The Thunderbirds dropped a 5-2 decision in Regina to the Pats on Wednesday night for their fifth defeat over their last six games, and remain in fourth place in the U.S. Division. Seattle’s power play is clicking at 29.7% effectiveness this season.
In Prince George, B.C., Troy Bourke and the Prince George Cougars (7-8-1-1) host TJ Foster and the Edmonton Oil Kings (11-5-1-2) for the first of back-to-back weekend meetings between the teams.
The Cougars have been idle since dropping a 6-0 decision in Kelowna last Saturday for their second straight defeat, and currently sit in fourth place in the B.C. Division. The Cougars are 4-3-1 at home this season.
The Oil Kings fell 3-2 to the Rockets in Kelowna on Wednesday, snapping a modest two-game win streak, and currently sit in second place in the Central Division. The Oil Kings are 2-2 through four games of a six-game road trip.
In Saskatoon, SK, Josh Nicholls and the Saskatoon Blades (7-9-0-1) host Morgan Klimchuk and the Regina Pats (8-11-1-0) for an East Division battle on Friday.
The Blades suffered a 5-4 shootout loss to the Hurricanes in Lethbridge on Saturday, snapping a two-game winning streak, and currently sit in sixth place in the East Division. The Blades have managed just one win through their first six home games.
The Pats skated to a 5-2 win over the visiting Seattle Thunderbirds on Wednesday for their second win in a row, and currently sit two points up on Saskatoon in fifth place in the East Division. Klimchuk (9g-9a) ranks second on the Pats in scoring with 18 points this season.
In Spokane, WA, Brenden Kichton and the Spokane Chiefs (13-6-0-0) take on Brendan Ranford and the Kamloops Blazers (17-2-0-1) for a battle between top Western Conference teams on Friday.
The Chiefs are coming off back-to-back shutout wins over the Everett Silvertips in Spokane, having posted a 5-0 win on Saturday and a 4-0 win on Tuesday, and currently sit tied for second place in the U.S. Division. The Chiefs are 9-1-0 on home ice this season.
The Blazers fell 2-1 to the visiting Edmonton Oil Kings on Tuesday for their second loss over their last three games, but remain firmly in first place in the Western Conference and overall WHL standings. The Blazers have scored just twice over their last three games.
In Kennewick, WA, Justin Feser and the Tri-City Americans (12-6-1-1) host Ryan Murray and the Everett Silvertips (6-13-0-2) for a U.S. Division battle.
The Americans blasted the visiting Vancouver Giants 9-1 on Sunday for their third straight win, and currently share second place in the U.S. Division with Spokane. Feser is the reigning Denny’s WHL Player of the Week.
The Silvertips dropped a 4-2 decision to the visiting Red Deer Rebels on Wednesday for their seventh straight defeat, and remain in fifth place in the U.S. Division. The ‘Tips are 5-8-0 on the road this season.