BRANDON, MB - Three quick goals early in the first period was the difference as the Brandon Wheat Kings got by the Hurricanes 6-2 Friday night.
Not a very good start for the Hurricanes in this one. Brandon came out gunning, scoring 3 goals in less than 5 minutes to open what turned out to be rather wild opening periods of hockey. Daniel Asham tipped in the puck on the Wheaties first shot of the night making it 1-0 Brandon just a few minutes in. 90 seconds later Paul Ciarelli knocked a shot by Damien Ketlo to give the Wheaties a 2-0 lead. Less than a minute after that, Bruno Mraz found the back of the net and just like that, the Hurricanes were down 3-0. Brandon managed 3 goals on it's first 4 shots of the night. The Canes settled down after that. They began chipping their way back when Jaimen Yakubowski scored his 13th of the season after a scramble out front of the Wheat Kings goal. That cut the Brandon lead to 3-1. Before the end of the period, the Hurricanes would make it a one goal game. Macoy Erkamps jumped in from the point and fired a knuckle ball shot by Corbin Boes for his 3rd of the season, cutting the Wheaties lead to 3-2 after 20 minutes. Things didn't start out too well for the Hurricanes in this one, but they found a way to come back after being down a bunch early. The Canes out shot Brandon 12-8.
In the second, the Wheaties would get those two Lethbridge goals back, both with the man advantage. Brendan Walker took a pass at the side of the Canes goal and beat Ketlo to make it 4-2 Brandon. Two minutes later, the Wheat Kings would get another power play and they'd make good on that one too. Brodie Melnychuk hammered a slapper from the point to give the home team a 5-2 lead. The Hurricanes had a few good chances to score in the period, but unlike in the opening 20 minutes, they were unable to get one by Corbin Boes. The shots favoured Lethbridge 25-20.
In the third, the Wheat Kings would finish things off with another goal from Brendan Walker, his 2nd of the game to give Brandon a 6-2 lead and that's the way the game would end. Brandon had a strong 3rd period and would end up out shooting the Canes 38-36 when it was all said and done. The Wheaties went 2/5 on the power play and Lethbridge went 0/5. The loss drops the Hurricanes overall record to 26-38-0-1 in 65 games this season. The Canes have 7 games remaining before things wrap up on March 17th. Hurricanes Assistant Coach Chris Chisamore says he wasn't at all tonight on the CJOC post game show. "We had no jump and let them do what they wanted. I'm disappointed with the effort from some of our guys."
"IT'S YOUR TIME" BLOOD CAMPAIGN A SUCCESS
During the month of February, the Hurricanes partnered with Canadian Blood Services at six home games, looking for new donors. The campaign this year brought it 71 new blood donors and 179 regular donations. That equals 250 units of blood.
The Hurricanes will close out this road swing Saturday (Mar. 3) when they play the Warriors in Moose Jaw. The Warriors have won both games these teams have played this season. Game time is 6:00 (MST). The pre-game show on CJOC at 5:30. The Hurricanes return home next Tuesday to host the Warriors for the final time this season. Lethbridge will welcome Calgary on Friday (Mar. 9) and Saturday (Mar. 10) they'll play their final home of the season against Medicine Hat. Prior to that game, the Hurricanes will give out their annual regular season player awards.