Brandon Wheat Kings
Brandon, MB. — The Brandon Wheat Kings missed a golden opportunity to regain first place in the Western Hockey League’s Eastern Division Sunday night as they closed out a 3-game home stand at Westman Communications Group Place.
Matt Hewitt turned aside 33 shots, including fourteen in the third period to lead the visiting Regina Pats to a 2-0 victory over the Wheat Kings before 3,300 fans.
Losers of four of their last six games, Brandon was hoping to come out and jump on the Pats in the opening period as Regina was playing their third game in as many nights. Instead, Regina outshot them 11-10, outworked them and thanks to a bad bounce behind the net, they took a 1-0 lead to the dressing room after one period.
With the loss, the Wheat Kings record slipped to 18-11-1-1 and they remain one point back of both Moose Jaw and Saskatoon in the Eastern Division as the Warriors and Blades dropped Sunday night games in Pirnce Albert and Edmonton respectively. Brandon is now 5-5-0 in its last ten games.
Winners of two of three games this past weekend, the Pats meanwhile have now moved to within six points of the third place Wheat Kings – with two games in hand.
Dominik Volek and Jordan Weal scored Regina’s goals while Brandon’s Corbin Boes turned aside 29 of 31 shots in taking the loss.
The victory for the Pats snapped a 9-game losing streak for Regina at Westman Place. Prior to Sunday night, the Pats had not won in Brandon since December 27th, 2008 when they scored a 5-4 overtime decision.
The Wheat Kings will now hit the road for three games in four nights in Alberta, starting with a game against Derek Laxdall’s Oil Kings on Thursday night. Brandon will then play in Red Deer and Calgary on Friday and Sunday nights before returning home to face the Kelowna Rockets on Tuesday, December 13th.
Next Tuesday is the club’s first of two Rain Check games of the year, which means any unused Wheat King ticket can be exchanged at the box office for a “free” ticket to this game.