One night after losing 5-0 to begin their preseason, the Winnipeg ICE won their first preseason game on Saturday night.
They scored their first goal in the second period, and from there, they scored often in a 5-1 win against the Brandon Wheat Kings.
In a season when the two teams will play each other 10 times in the regular season, they split their preseason meetings.
Prior to Saturday’s game, it was announced that star forward Matthew Savoie would play at least 30 games this season. That’s great news for Winnipeg, and he showed why on Saturday night with a solid WHL debut.
On the team’s first goal of the game at the 6:57 mark of the second, Savoie set up Cole Muir who put it past Connor Ungar.
That goal gave Winnipeg some inspiration to tack on a few more, and the second goal came just over a couple of minutes later.
At the 9:04 mark, Logan Danis scored his first goal as a member of the ICE. It’s been quite a few months for Logan, who signed his first standard player contract earlier in the summer.
Holden Kodak had the lone assist on the marker that made it 2-0 for Winnipeg.
At the 13:34 mark, Brandon hit the scoreboard for the first time to get back in it. Jonny Hooker scored a goal for a second straight night.
After that, it was all Winnipeg. Playing in a home game away from home, the ICE gave the fans at Stride Place several more things to cheer about.
Connor McClennon netted his first of the preseason, after a great summer which included more than a week overseas with Team Canada. Brad Ginnell and Nolan Orzeck picked up the two assists. The goal was scored at 15:54.
Brad Ginnell wasn’t done there. He made it 4-1 with 2:01 left in the midway frame, and Winnipeg held that lead after 40 minutes.
At 7:45 of the third, Winnipeg continued their very efficient night offensively, when Owen Pederson scored his first. Cole Muir picked up his first assist and Matthew Savoie notched his second helper.
Winnipeg was also very stingy defensively. They allowed just 23 shots and Will Gurski made 22 saves.
Winnipeg now gets several days off of game action before they continue their preseason. They head to Saskatoon for a pair of games next weekend.
Brandon, meanwhile, will play a home-and-home with Moose Jaw next weekend, beginning on Friday at Mosaic Place in Moose Jaw. On Saturday, Brandon hosts the Warriors.
Winnipeg and Brandon went a combined 0-for-11 on the man-advantage. Brandon was 0-for-6, while Winnipeg was 0-for-5.
11 Winnipeg skaters were at least a +1. Owen Pederson led the way with a +3.
Vincent Iorio had three assists on Friday night. He didn’t have any on Saturday, but he had five shots for Brandon.
Five Winnipeg skaters had three shots, including Logan Danis, who scored his first goal.
Winnipeg native Mike Ladyman was also a +3 for Winnipeg.