The Richardson Pioneer Weyburn Red Wings have now won seven of their last ten games, and have picked up points in nine straight, as they skated to a 4-1 win over the Flin Flon Bombers Thursday night. The win also put the Red Wings at .500, the first time since the 2017-18 season the club has been above .500 after December.
The win also moved the Red Wings within two points of the Nipawin Hawks for 7th place, and within six points of the Estevan Bruins for 6th place in the standings.
One of the keys to the win for the Red Wings was their penalty kill and their power play, as they stopped the Bombers on all five of their man advantages while scoring two power-play goals themselves en route to the victory.
“Our grit and determination showed through in the end,” said Red Wings head coach Cody Mapes after the game. “We had a lot of big penalty kills in the end, and we ran five d-men all night and those four guys, four regulars, were really good.”
Mapes was also impressed with AP call-up Rhett Vedress. The coach pointed specifically to how he was able to fill in when Nolan Henderson had to serve a 10-minute misconduct penalty, and how Vedress was able to step in so no one missed a beat.
The Bombers were actually the ones to take the lead when Jacob Vockler scored a goal with just 2:07 remaining in the first period. The goal gave the Bombers the lead. Entering the game Thursday night, the Bombers had not lost in regulation all season if they had the lead after 20 minutes. The Red Wings would be the ones to break that streak.
In the second period, Ryley Morgan would fire the puck past Harmon Laser-Hume at the 6:05 mark of the frame. His 18th of the season, scored on the power play, was assisted by Nicholas Kovacs and Ty Mason. Then, Jakob Kalin would give Weyburn the lead with 3:27 to go in the second. His 19th of the year was assisted by Henderson and Max Monette.
In the third period, Matteo Turrin would get the chance to open the lead to two goals when he was awarded a penalty shot just 6:09 into the period as he was hauled down on a rush into the Flin Flon zone. Looking to atone for a shot that went off the crossbar in the second, Turrin came in, and made his move, but would end up going a little too high, sending the puck over the net.
Weyburn would put the game away on a goal later in the period by Kovacs. The trailing man on a 3-on-2 rush into the Bombers zone, he took a feed from Kalin and put it into the twine behind Laser-Hume with 9:29 left on the clock in regulation. The other assist on the goal was credited to Carter Briltz.
The final goal of the game came with 2:10 on the clock when Elijah Anderson would fire the puck toward the net on the power play. It would carom off three or four players in the crease, and squeak between the legs of the Flin Flon goalie to make it 4-1.
In the Weyburn crease, Dazza Mitchell had an outstanding game. The second-year netminder would turn away 31 of the 32 shots that he faced to pick up his 13th win of the season.
The Red Wings will now prepare for a big match-up with the Nipawin Hawks Saturday night. A win and the Wings will be tied with Nipawin for 7th place in the SJHL, while still holding a game in hand. The puck drops on the game at Crescent Point Place at 7:00 p.m.