The Wiesblatt brothers are well known around the hockey world. On Sunday night in Winnipeg, Orca Wiesblatt made the ICE pay as the Calgary Hitmen snapped their losing streak.
In a game that saw just 39 shots combined, Calgary put a halt on its mini two-game skid. Wiesblatt scored the game breaker late in the third in a 3-2 win for the road side.
“I thought it was a tight-checking game with not a lot of shots. It was hard to get inside and I think Calgary was desperate and hungry,” said James Patrick after the game courtesy of winnipegice.ca. “Their defence kept our players to the outside for the majority of the night and that was the difference.”
On Saturday, Winnipeg’s power play was solid as it scored three times on six chances. However, the team couldn’t replicate that success on Sunday, capitalizing only once on five tries.
“We had one power play where we moved the puck on the outside for an entire two minutes. We didn’t get any shots; we were too stationary,” continued Patrick. “Our feet weren’t moving enough. We did get one late when we jammed the net, but we needed more of that.”
Winnipeg opened the scoring. Just 8:05 into the first, Cole Muir beat Brayden Peters for his sixth of the season. That was the only goal of the period. Peters made eight saves while Jesse Makaj stopped seven shots for Winnipeg.
The Hitmen got back into the game early in the second while a man short. 4:45 into the frame, Riley Fiddler-Schultz scored his fourth of the season, shorthanded, and the game was tied at one.
Nearly 12 minutes later while on the power play, Carson Focht scored his 22nd of the season to give Calgary a lead, one they held into the third period.
“They came out hard, they pushed hard and we had some breakdowns,” said Isaac Johnson after the game. “They also did a great job of boxing out our forwards.”
Up 2-1 early in the third, Calgary got in some penalty trouble. Fiddler-Schultz took a boarding penalty at the 4:25 mark and Winnipeg made them pay. Johnson tallied his 17th of the season as the ICE tied the game at two.
The game remained tied for about nine minutes until Calgary found the back of the net again. Orca Wiesblatt notched his 15th of the season, putting the Hitmen up 3-2. Winnipeg could never really get it going from that point on as they suffered defeat.
Winnipeg is now 27-16-1, but they still remain in the top spot in the East Division despite the loss. Calgary, meanwhile, improved to 23-15-4-1.
- Carson Focht’s goal put him in the lead when it comes to Hitmen goal scoring. His 22 are one ahead of Mark Kastelic.
- The loss was Winnipeg’s first at the Wayne Fleming Arena since January 8.
- The ICE are 4-3 so far on their current nine-game homestand.
- Calgary went 2-2 on its road trip. The team will now play six of its next eight games on home ice.