TODAY AT 3PM WITH AN OPENING REMEMBRANCE DAY CEREMONY
story by Play-By-Play Voice of the Red Wings, Steven Wilson, of DiscoverWeyburn.com
Weyburn Red Wings (12-9-0-1, 2nd Viterra) vs. Humboldt Broncos (14-6-0-1, 2nd Finning)
Crescent Point Place, Weyburn, SK
3:00 p.m., K106
The Weyburn Red Wings host the Humboldt Broncos this afternoon. The Wings are coming off a 3-1 home ice loss to the Yorkton Terriers Wednesday, where they threw everything but the kitchen sink at the net, but couldn’t solve Matt Vernon. The Broncos last game was a 4-3 loss to the Notre Dame Hounds.
This is the second meeting between the two teams this year. The first game was a 7-2 win for Humboldt, which saw former Red Wing Chris Van Os-Shaw pick up two goals and two assists in the win. The scoreboard doesn’t tell the whole tale of the game, as Garrett Mason was outstanding in net for the Broncos that day, holding the Wings at bay despite pressure throughout the final 40 minutes.
The Broncos and Red Wings are teams that thrive with an early lead. Humboldt is 11-1 on the season when they lead after the opening 20, while the Red Wings have yet to lose in regulation. Trailing after the first period, though, is an achilles heel of the Broncos. They have yet to win if they enter the second period behind on the scoreboard. The Wings will need to come out flying if they want to pick up the victory.
Special teams are always important to the successes of a hockey team. For the Broncos, they have the second best powerplay in the league. They are converting 22.7 per cent of the time, and that number is even better on the road (26.2). The Red Wings have struggled at times with the man advantage this season, and they have been trying to get that momentum back in recent games. Weyburn has the 10th ranked power play at 15.3per cent, which is marginally better at home at 17.2 per cent.The Red Wings have struggled even more when down a man, with a PK of 77.8 per cent, which is 11th in the league. In the one game against Humboldt already this season, though, the Wings went 1-and-2 with the man advantage while Humboldt went 1-and-3.
Goaltending will be a key part of the game. Carter Phair is expected to make his first start this season as a Red Wing. Phair was re-assigned to Weyburn by the Kamloops Blazers of the WHL last week. As a result, there were four goaltenders on the squad, and Nathan Hargrave, the 20-year-old netminder the Wings acquired from the Kindersley Klippers before the season began, became the odd man out. He was traded Wednesday to the Yorkton Terriers. Phair is expected to carry the bulk of the work for the rest of the season, with the exception of December/January, when he is expected to be called back up to the Blazers to cover off during the World Juniors.
Carter Semeniuk will more than likely get the start for Humboldt. Garrett Mason, who played against the Wings in the last game, has started the last three games for the Broncos, two of which were losses. That said, Mason has started nine consecutive games for the Broncos once this year, so there is the possibility he may be left in to see if he can work through the issues of the past two games.
The puck drops just after 3:00 p.m. for the game today. Prior, there will be a Remembrance Day ceremony, as there is every year for the annual matinee for the Wings. The game will be broadcast on Red Wings Radio, K106, with the pregame show beginning at 2:50 p.m.
Game day preview sponsored by Tim Hortons