Wheat Kings Media
September 21, 2013, Moose Jaw, SK (ISN) – The Brandon Wheat Kings opened up the 2013-14 Western Hockey League season on a winning note Friday night.
Taylor Cooper’s first ever WHL hat trick led Brandon to a 6-3 victory over the Moose Jaw Warriors in the first of a season opening weekend home and home series between the two teams.
An 18-year old native of Sherwood Park, Alberta, Cooper scored nine goals as a rookie in 2012-13 and Brandon coach and general manager Kelly McCrimmon believes that Friday night could be a sign of things to come for the left-winger.
“Part of it for Taylor is realizing that he needs to use it, and he pulled away from people tonight and that’s what allowed him to get each of his goals, first and foremost, was speed,” McCrimmon told Bruce Luebke on CKLQ’s post-game show. “And then, great shots. They were goal-scorers’ goals, every one of them were real good plays.”
Jens Meilleur had a goal and two assists while Ryley Lindgren – with his first ever WHL goal – and Richard Nejezchleb also scored for the Wheat Kings, who will be hoping to make it two for two against the Warriors when the two teams collide at Westman Place for Brandon’s Home Opener Saturday night.
Veteran Curtis Honey was solid between the pipes in the Brandon net, turning aside 36 shots including nine in the final period.
Jack Rodewald, Brayden Point and Brandon Potomak replied for the Warriors, who led 2-1 after twenty minutes but trailed 4-3 after two periods.
Tickets to Saturday’s Brandon Sun Home Opener, which will feature special pre-game festivities including a Keystone Centre Tailgate Party in the Convention Hall, are on sale at the Keystone Centre box office, by calling (204) 726-3555 or online at wheatkings.com.
Saturday’s Tailgate Party starts at 4pm and will feature food, drink, children’s activities including inflatables and games and music from the British invasion rock band The Ukadians.
Long time Hockey Brandon President Glen Parker will perform the ceremonial opening face-off and Saskatchewan recording artist Jess Moskaluke will sing the national anthem.