MOOSE JAW, SK. - The Lethbridge Hurricanes found their way back into win column and Jay Merkley found the back of the net twice in a 4-1 victory in Moose Jaw Monday afternoon.
The Lethbridge Hurricanes would open the scoring in this afternoon contest in Moose Jaw. Lenny Hackman's point shot was redirected perfectly by Brady Ramsay, who beat partially screened Justin Paulic to give Lethbridge a 1-0 lead. Moose Jaw had a few good scoring chances too, but Ty Rimmer was able to shut the door and keep them off the score sheet. The Canes took the 1-0 lead into the dressing room after 20 minutes. The Warriors out shot the Hurricanes 11-7.
In the second, the Canes would add to their lead. Dan Johnston hammered a shot from the point, through a crowd of traffic to make it 2-0 Lethbridge. That was Johnston's 6th goal of the season and gave the Canes some breathing room in this game. The Hurricanes weren't done there. Jay Merkley got in on the action when he snapped home his 10th of the season off a nice pass from behind the goal from Craig Leverton. That made it 3-0 Hurricanes. Things got really chippy later on when Moose Jaw's Spencer Morse smoked Tyler Wong with a high hit and then a few minutes later Travis Brown laid out Jaimen Yakubowski with an elbow to the head. Brown was given a 5 minute major for checking to the head and a game misconduct. Lethbridge took a 3-0 lead after 40 minutes. The Warriors held the edge in shots 23-14.
In the third, Jay Merkley would score his second goal of the afternoon on a 4-on-1 rush on the power play. The puck went off his skate and in and after a video review, the goal counted and the Canes would take a commanding 4-0 lead. Moose Jaw would break Ty Rimmer's shut out bid, when Bryson Gore tipped a pass by Rimmer to break his shutout bid and cut the Canes lead to 4-1. That's as close as the Warriors would get in this one as the Canes would win their 13th game of the season. Lethbridge went 1/4 on the power play and Moose Jaw 0/5. The Warriors out shot the Hurricanes 35-23.
The victory puts the Hurricanes back to 5 games over .500 at 13-8-1-1 on the season for 28 points, moving them into a second place tie with Prince Albert in the Eastern Conference.
The Hurricanes head back home now for their next three games. On Friday, it'll be a match up of two of the top teams in the WHL's Eastern Conference as the Prince Albert Raiders come to town. These two teams haven't played since October 9th in Lethbridge when the Raiders won 4-1. That was before the Hurricanes turned their season around. The Raiders got off to a strong start this year and have been able to maintain that, for the most part, keeping them right near the top of the standings. This should be a good battle. Game time is 7:00 pm (MST). The pre-game show on CJOC at 6:30. Lethbridge will welcome the Brandon Wheat Kings on Sunday night and next Tuesday (Nov. 20) the Calgary Hitmen come to town for the first time this season.