An uncharacteristic outing for the Weyburn Red Wings Friday night, as they fell 6-1 to the Estevan Bruins at home.
The Wings accumulated 90 minutes in penalties, and the two teams combined for 146 penalty minutes in total.The Bruins' power play proved to be the key difference in the game, as they picked up four powerplay goals on their way to the win.
The Bruins got on the board early in the first period, when Jason Miller put a shot on goal that caught a piece of Red Wings netminder Nathan Hargrave just 45 seconds into the game. The Bruins would add to the lead 11 minutes later, when Matt McNeil scored a power play goal. The Bruins rounded out the scoring in the period when Jake Fletcher threw the puck on net with a weak shot from just inside the Red Wings blue line that made it’s way past Hargrave.
Red Wings head coach Wes Rudy opted to make a change in goal for the second period, with Sean Fleming coming out for the Wings. The change seemed to spark the Red Wings, as they scored just under four minutes into the frame. Jacob Wozney netted his second of the season, with assists going to Donavon Lumb and Landon Walters. That would prove to be the only offense the Red Wings could muster, as they began to sink into penalty trouble.
Just past the halfway mark, McNeill scored his second of the game, on the powerplay, restoring the three goal lead for the Bruins. Just over two minutes later, Zac Goberis beat FLeming to make the score 5-1. The Red Wings spent more time killing penalties, before things boiled over for the first time on the night with 16 seconds remaining.
A scuffle started in front of the Bruins bench, with Miller and Red Wings forward Braden Mellon exchanging words. Other players joined the fray, and Lumb ended up tangled up with Josh Rieger. It appeared Rieger goaded Lumb on, who then dropped his gloves. The fight was a one sided affair, and as a result, Lumb was given a five minute major and game misconduct, while Rieger wasn’t penalized. Over in the scrum, Miller received a 10-minute misconduct, and Carson Rose for the Wings was assessed a double minor for butt-ending.
The Bruins started the third period with a 5-on-3 man advantage, and were able to capitalize on it, with Kaelan Holt netting his eighth of the year. Just as Holt fired the puck, he was hit by Red Wings captain Mike Eskra, which resulted in a fight between McNeil and Eskra. Eskra received a five and a game for a blow to the head, in addition to the fighting penalty.
For the Wings, the parade to the penalty box continued, as they spent over nine minutes on the penalty kill to begin the period. With just under ten minutes remaining in the game, another scrum erupted along the boards that had the potential to erupt into a line brawl. Noah Wozney and Goberis squared off, with both receiving majors and game misconducts. When all the penalties were sorted out, the Red Wings ended up on a powerplay, but were unable to convert.
The Bruins held the Wings off the board, and skated away with the win, but not all of the shenanigans were done. Jacob Wozney and Hayden Guilderson began to exchange words as the buzzer sounds, and players from both teams converged on the two. Officials were able to separate the teams.
The league president, Bill Chow, was in attendance at the game, and there is a possibility supplementary discipline could be handed out to both teams. Eskra could face a one game suspension as a result of the blow to the head major, while Goberis could receive a suspension for his actions during the fight with Wozney. Word will be expected from the league office before the Red Wings travel to Humboldt Saturday for their game against the Broncos.
The game Saturday will be broadcast on Red Wing Radio K106, with Steven Wilson have the call in Humboldt, and Zac Chartrand anchoring the broadcast from the studios in Weyburn. It all starts with the pregame show at 7:20 p.m.