If you want to stay near the top of your division, picking up wins against divisional opponents is massive. On Wednesday night in Saskatoon, the Brandon Wheat Kings did just that in a matchup with the Blades. In a game that featured solid performances for a few Wheat Kings, Brandon skated away with a 5-1 win.
From start to finish, the game was all Wheat Kings as they outshot Saskatoon and opened up a 4-0 lead in the process on their way to two points.
“I liked our game from start to finish,” said assistant coach Don MacGillivray courtesy of the QCountry post-game show. “We scored some nice goals, two on the power play and one shorthanded. We had a lot of guys doing the little things right and it was a really solid win.”
It didn’t take Brandon long to open the scoring and when they did, it was on the power play. 6:02 into the game, Cole Reinhardt snapped home his 26th of the season to give Brandon a 1-0 lead — a lead that was increased later in the frame. With 2:31 left in the period, Braden Schneider potted his sixth to give Brandon a 2-0 lead after 20 minutes.
In the second, Brandon kept coming in a hurry. Just 12 seconds into the midway frame, Connor Gutenberg found the back of the net with his 11th of the season as the Wheat Kings took a commanding 3-0 lead. Once again, Brandon increased the lead later that period. With 2:07 left in the second and while on the power play, Ridly Greig netted his 19th of the campaign and Brandon had a big 4-0 lead after 40.
Saskatoon trimmed the deficit in the third very quickly as Nolan Kneen found the twine just 1:45 into the period.
Greig officially canceled any plans of a Saskatoon comeback. While killing a penalty, he scored his 20th of the season shorthanded as Brandon went up 5-1 and that was the final score.
“This is a big win for us,” added MacGillivray. “To come on the road, in this building against a good team, this was an important win and it’s something we can build on moving forward this weekend.”
The same two teams will go toe-to-toe once again this weekend to conclude a home-and-home. On Friday, the Wheat Kings will host the back half at 7:30 inside of Westoba Place. Brandon’s win moved its record to 28-19-3-2 and the team now has a two-point cushion over Saskatoon for third in the East Division. The Wheat Kings are also just four points back of both Winnipeg and Prince Albert for the top spot.
“We’re getting more confident in how we have to play to be successful,” concluded MacGillivray.
- Ridly Greig and Connor Gutenberg led the offence for Brandon with four points each while Braden Schneider had two.
- Greig had a chance to score three goals but Nolan Maier stopped him on a penalty shot.
- Jiri Patera made 22 saves in the game while Maier stopped 27.