Saturday, 6 October 2012

Chiefs Double Up Hurricanes 4-2 in Spokane

SPOKANE, WA. - Two power play goals were the difference as the Spokane Chiefs doubled up the Lethbridge Hurricanes 4-2 Saturday night.

A strong start to the first period for Lethbridge in this game.  The Canes came out gunning, out shooting the Chiefs 9-4 at one point, but the flood gates opened just past midway point of the period when Spokane got things going with the first of 3 goals in roughly 5 minutes.  Mitch Holmberg stole the puck in the Hurricanes zone, moved in and snapped the puck off the post and by Ty Rimmer to give the Chiefs a 1-0 lead.  Four minutes later, the Chiefs would make good on the power play when Todd Fiddler scored to give Spokane a 2-0.  Shortly after that, the Chiefs would get another power play and they would make good again.  Collin Valcourt with a great move, beating Rimmer between the legs.  That made it 3-0 Spokane in very short order.  The Hurricanes though responded right off the face-off following that goal, when Jamien Yakubowski scored his 3rd of the season, 19 seconds later beating Eric Williams up high to cut the Chiefs lead to 3-1 after one period of play.  Lethbridge out shot the Chiefs 12-10.

In the second, the Hurricanes would chip their way back into the game.  While on the penalty kill, Remi Laurencelle grabbed the puck in his own end and moved in short-handed on a two-on-one rush and snapped a bullet over the shoulder of Williams and into the top corner for his first of the season.  That cut the Spokane lead to 3-2, making for an interesting finish to this game.  Spokane turned up the heat big time in the period, out shooting the canes 19-4, but Ty Rimmer came through with several big saves to keep his team in the game.  The total shots were 29-18 Chiefs through 40 minutes.

In the third, the Hurricanes would turn up the heat a few a notches, pressing for the equalizer.  They would have several great scoring chances to tie the game, but Eric Williams continued to come up with save after save to hold Lethbridge off the scoresheet for the rest of the night.  The Chiefs would some insurance with a few minutes remaining when Tanner Mort beat a screened Ty Rimmer to make it 4-2 Spokane and that's the way the game would end.  Spokane out shot Lethbridge 43-29 in this game.  Jamien Yakubowski was the game's 3rd star, Ty Rimmer was the 2nd, and Eric Williams of the Chiefs the 1st star.  Special teams was the difference in this game.  Spokane went 2/4 on the power play and Lethbridge 0/3.  Assistant Coach Chris Chisamore said on the CJOC post game show that it's frustrating to play decent hockey on the road, but have nothing to show for it.  He was also upset the Canes lost their last two games with special teams being the difference.


The Hurricanes will be back at home now for the next few weeks for the start of a six game home stand, beginning Tuesday night (Oct. 9) when they host the red hot Prince Albert Raiders.  PA has not lost a game in regulation time this season and have the league's best record in the first few weeks.  In fact, the Raiders have only one loss in a shootout to their credit in 6 games played so far. The Canes will play three games this coming week, starting with the Raiders Tuesday and then on the weekend Prince George will roll into town of Friday (Oct. 12) and on Saturday (Oct. 13) the Hurricanes will welcome the Saskatoon Blades to the ENMAX Centre.


Although Monday is Thanksgiving, we will still be on the air with Hurricanes This Week on CJOC.  Our guests Monday include Hurricanes Assistant Coach Chris Chisamore, Prince Albert Raiders Play-by-Play Broadcaster Drew Wilson, and WHL Commissioner Ron Robison.  The show begins at 7:00 pm (MDT).  Any shows missed LIVE can be downloaded the following day on



  1. Sounded like the Canes played better, but Pat's first paragraph says it all.....PP/PK still brutal. Chisamore's disappointed with their special teams??

    How does he think the fans feel?!!

    The upcoming homestand is a chance for a lot of good practice time on special teams. Let's hope Preston uses it wisely!


  2. Preston does not believe in practicing special team. Get used to it. The kids are on their own.

  3. I have a bad feeling about the PA game on Tuesday night. (Long bus ride back from Spokane, not a lot of rest, school on Tuesday for some, no time to practice and a hot team coming to town. I hope I'm wrong).


  4. Optimistic-me (AKA=delusional-me??) says that PA will play their #2 in net again, and take the night off on Tuesday resulting in a big win for the Canes.

    Realistic-me pipes up and says that PA's players will see an opportunity to get an early start on padding their stats in a nice quiet building that is SO easy to play and in.

  5. I'm beginning to see why PA is on top of the standings now. Mike Winther (Dallas 2nd Round 2012 draft), highly touted 2013 draft prospect/defenceman Josh Morrissey, Chicago 2011 1st Rounder Mark MacNeill is a big centreman, 2011 Coyotes 3rd Round pick, shut-down defenceman Harrison Ruopp. Not to mention, it looks like they have a Euro centre from Germany (6' 1", 198lbs Centre) who has 6pts in 7 games.

    That would mean their top 3 centres (including Logan McVeigh at 6' 1" 195lbs) are all over 6 ft. and will have a considerable size advantage over the smaller Hurricanes forwards.

    Just an observation after seeing how well PA has started the season. It's great to have small/fast/skilled forwards, but when the opposition has big/skilled/fast forwards, you won't win many physical battles anywhere on the ice.


  6. Good observations Darren. You can win with having small forwards if you use your speed and move the puck quickly. From what I see Canes are still trying to play a low puck possession game down low instead of using all 5 players in the offensive zone and moving the puck. They will not win the battles down low with their size they have to move the puck to the point and creats shots and rebounds. That is all coaching. They are playing an offensive style as if all their forwards were 6'2" 200pounds and we have 2 guys like that out of 12. Scott

  7. Speed and skill. Kind of sounds like Spokane on the power play. A close and reliable source who was at the game in Spokane told me that Spokane's power play was executed with finise and purpose, while ours flounder. I have to agree with Darren and Scott, that special teams are killing us. Just look at the WHL stats, we are 21st in both categories.

    Powerplays and penalty kills are all built on systems. Systems that teach players to adapt to given situations. Not with unplanned reactions.



  8. Does Preston shut down every good idea of Kabayama and Chisamore?? I can't fathom how the Canes special teams continue to fail... if the asst coaches are disappointed, then they should be allowed/capable to fix it... except we hear the Head Coach tell us that the team never practises PP/PK. It's only pond hockey systems for these guys...

    Four years ago, the Canes used to practise special teams WITH the Pronghorns (who are mostly all graduated WHL'ers)..... but that's when the Canes were an above .500 club..... of all the long bus rides, a 10 minute car ride to/from the west side arena is too much??