It was a shootout at Crescent Point Place Saturday night, as the Weyburn Red Wings and Estevan Bruins combined for nine goals. In the end, though, it was the Bruins who came out on top, winning the final pre-season meeting between the two teams 5-4.
For Red Wings fans, it was the first time they had a look at offseason acquisition Arik Weersink. The goaltender started the game and played the full 60 minutes. He allowed five goals on 42 shots in the loss.
“I like the effort by the fellas, we had a lots of ups and downs,” Weersink said after the game. He added it was nice to get into the game and see some action, as he wasn’t dressed for the previous three games. “It was nice to put on a jersey.”
The Bruins were the first to get on the board when Tanner McKechnie scored on Weersink with just over five minutes left in the first period. Weyburn was quick to respond, as Cole Woodliffe tallied, assisted by Shae Kiryk and Carson Scheschuk.
The tie was broken early in the second when Michael McChesney scored his fourth of the preseason at the 9:03 mark of the period. Weyburn responded with just under four minutes left in the middle frame when Derick Smith scored on the power play. The goal, set up by Jessie Young, was his third in two games against Estevan.
“I’ve been playing with (Cade) Kowalski and Young, two great players,” said Smith. “They’re both 99’s, and they have a lot of skill and high hockey IQ, and it makes my job easy.”
The tie was broken with just 15 seconds left on the clock in the third when Matthew Chekay beat Weersink.
Weyburn would once again tie the game when Jeremy Velazquez scored 3:04 into the third period. The power play marker was assisted by Dylan McCabe and Devon Becker. Estevan again tried to pull away, when McChesney scored his second of the game 23 seconds later. Not even a full minute passed before Chekay scored again, making it a 5-3 game.
Weyburn poured on the pressure in the period, with Ty Brown scoring his second of the preseason with just over 11 minutes left in the period. Calder Newson and Smith assisted on the goal. Weyburn then continued to fire shots on goal, but couldn’t solve Estevan goalie Tyler Sztrum for the equalizer.
The coaching staff of the Red Wings will now have a lot of work to do in the coming days, as they finalize the roster ahead of the season opener September 15th.
“You never like to scratch guys, and send guys down the road,” assistant coach Brock Appleyard stated after the game. “I mean, it’s part of the business, right. Home opener is a big day for us.”
The Red Wings play their home opener against the Yorkton Terriers at Crescent Point Place. The game starts at 7:30 p.m.