President's Update - February 1st, 2016

There were only four games this past week in the HHL. Last Wednesday evening the Bethune Bulldogs added to their first place lead in the standings with a 6-1 victory over the Avonlea Arrows in Bethune.  Jake Ulmer scored the first four goals of the game for the Bulldogs that included two power play goals. Shea Van Luven would score the final two goals. Kyle Oleniuk scored for the Arrows. Ryan Seibel stopped 28 shots in the Bethune net for the win and Aaron Husband stopped 47 shots in the Avonlea net. Avonlea had five minor penalties and Bethune had three.  On Friday evening the Strasbourg Maroons created a three way tie for fifth place with the Canucks and Arrows with a 5-3 victory over the Canucks in Cupar.  Mitch McNish put the Maroons up 1-0 early in the first period and Elliot Hubick would tie the game up at 1-1 for the Canucks late in the first period.  The Maroons would get a power play goal from Donovan Thompson in the second period and then Sean Delwo and Greg Ferguson would score to put the Maroons up 4-1. Cody Hall would then score for the Canucks and it was 4-2 going into third period.  Brayden Frank would score for the Canucks early in the third period and there would be no more scoring until the last minute when Sean Delwo would get his second of the evening to make the final 5-3 for the Maroons.  The Canucks were assessed six minor penalties and the Maroons had three. Jeremy Ellis picked up the win in net for the Maroons and Tanner Kehler was in net for the Canucks.

On Saturday evening, the Lumsden Monarchs were in Raymore to play the Rockets. Both teams closed out their first Provincial ‘A’ series the evening before.  Cody Mapes scored the only goal of the first period and the Rockets had a 1-0 lead going into the second period. Early in the second period Mapes would score his second goal of the evening but the Monarchs responded quickly with a goal from Jared Adams. Michael Jordan would put the Rockets back up by two and then Kyle Johnson would score for Lumsden to make it 3-2. Warren Bashutsky scored for the Rockets and it was 4-2 going into the third period. Andrew Perrault would get the Monarchs to within one early in the second period with a power play goal. With six minutes left in the third period Cody Mapes would complete the hat trick and the Rockets would win 5-3. Travis Bosch picked up his 12th win in net for the Rockets and Aaron Schweitzer was in net for the Monarchs. Raymore had five minor penalties and Lumsden had six. In Wynyard, The Monarchs scored six goals in the second period to overcome a 2-1 deficit after the first period on their way to a 9-6 victory over the Cupar Canucks. Riley Storzuk led the way for the Monarchs with a hat trick. Landin Leshchyshyn scored twice for the Monarchs. Other Monarch goals were scored by Chad Mazurak, Lyle Ostapowich, Brett Leffler and Nowell Greasley. Cupar scored four times in the third period and two players did all the scoring for the Canucks. Cody Hall had three goals and three assists and Donovan Chow had three goals and an assist. Godric Tham had four assists for the Canucks. Mason Brewster picked up the win in net for the Monarchs and Tanner Kehler was in net for the Canucks. Each team had two minor penalties. With the win Wynyard moved into a tie with the Lumsden Monarchs for third place.

Two HHL teams move to the second round of Provincial ‘A’…. The Raymore Rockets defeated the Balgonie Bisons 4-0  in Balgonie on Friday evening to sweep their first round Provincial ‘A’ series 2-0. The Lumsden Monarchs also won their series with the Grenfell Spitfires with a 5-4 victory on Friday evening. The Monarchs were up 2-0 after one period.  Grenfell would score twice in the second period to tie game up and then score the first two goals in the third period to take a 4-2 lead. Lumsden would then score three unanswered to pull out the 5-4 win. It was a good hockey game. Thank you to the Grenfell Spitfires organization for the donation to the Joel Bachman “Never Give Up” fund prior to the game.  On Friday evening in Bethune the Bulldogs scored with three minutes left in the game to take a 3-2 lead over the Watrous Winterhawks only to see Watrous score twice before the end of the period for a 4-3 win in game one of their Provincial ‘A’ series. On Sunday the Bulldogs pulled out a 3-2 victory over the Winterhawks in Watrous to force a game three on Monday in Bethune. The winner of this series plays the Raymore Rockets. Also on Sunday, the Avonlea Arrows defeated the Balcarres Broncs 3-2 to force a third game in their series on Monday evening in Avonlea. The winner of this series plays the Lumsden Monarchs. In the other series involving an HHL team, the Wynyard Monarchs lost 4-3 to the Hague Royals on Sunday and lost that series 2-1. The Cupar Canucks begin their Provincial 'D' series against the Redvers Rockets in Cupar on Saturday evening in Cupar at 8 p.m.

Kyle Ross from Bulldogs continues to lead scoring race…Kyle Ross has 21 goals and 19 assists for 40 points to lead the Tyson Sievert Trophy scoring race. Kyle Johnson from Lumsden has moved into second place with 37 points and he is followed by Tyrell Shulko from Raymore with 35 points. Shulko also leads the league with 27 goals. Mike Reich from Bethune is fourth with 33 points and Brett Leffler from Wynyard and Josh Jordan from Raymore are tied for fifth place with 31 points.  Jordan leads the league with 22 assists. Travis Bosch from the Rockets continues to lead all goalies with a 2.97 GAA, 12 wins and 910 minutes played. Mason Brewster is next with a 3.00 GAA and he is followed by Ryan Seibel from Bethune who has a 3.30 GAA. Tyrell Shulko from the Rockets and Dale Spelchen from Wynyard lead all scorers with three game winning goals. Defenceman Andrew Perrault from the Lumsden Monarchs leads all scorers with five power play goals. Shulko is next with four goals.

The Lumsden Monarchs continue to lead all teams in special teams play at 112.6 (power play and penalty kill percentages combined). Raymore is next at 104.5 and Wynyard is at 102. The Monarchs power play success rate is at 29.9% and they are followed by Bethune at 28.4% and Raymore at 25.4%. Lumsden leads all penalty killing units with an 82.7% success rate. Cupar Canucks are next at 79.4% and Raymore at 79.1%. The Raymore Rockets are a perfect 9-0-0 when they score first. Bethune is 10-0-1 when they score first. Home teams are 31-22-3 so far this year and away teams are 25-26-5.

We still have a couple of games to get rescheduled prior to the start of playoffs on February 12th. On Friday evening Cupar is in Lumsden to play the Monarchs. On Saturday evening the Avonlea Arrows are in Wynyard to play the Monarchs and Lumsden will be in Bethune to play the first place Bulldogs.

You can follow us on Twitter  All of our tweets, which include updates from all games, appear on our front page just under the Upcoming Games column if you just want to follow on the website. You can also follow my account Pensky File  If you follow us on any portable device remember you have the option of the mobile view or the regular desktop view which you can change at the bottom of the page. Thank you for your continued support of senior hockey in Saskatchewan and the Highway Hockey League… With Provincials going there is even more hockey for you to enjoy, please get out to a game near you.

Gerry Tomkins

President – Highway Hockey League