Today’s Gameday Preview: January 27th, 2019

Game of the night: Kamloops Blazers @ Seattle Thunderbirds 6:05 PST

The suddenly hot Blazers make a quick turnaround, travelling around 500 kilometers after their shoot out win over the Victoria Royals at home last night. Kamloops (19-24-2-1) has won four straight games heading into this important battle, as both teams are fighting tooth and nail for the final playoff birth in the Western Conference.

Both teams playing their third game in three nights, Kamloops won both of their games while Seattle (17-22-5-1) managed three of a possible four points. They came back in the final seconds to score twice and extend Portland to overtime last night.

The teams are separated by just one point in the wild card chase

Kamloops 20-year-old captain Jermaine Loewen has been red hot lately with points in seven of his last

Jermaine Loewen-Nolan Volcan (Brian Liesse)

eight games. He scored both Kamloops goals last night, including the tying goal with 46 ticks left on the score clock. He’ll continue to be relied upon to supply offense as his confidence continues to grow.

On the Seattle side of the ice, Matthew Wedman will continue to be looked at to supply more offense for the Thunderbirds attack. With points in his last four games including a hat-trick, Wedman has stepped up his game after the trade that saw Zach Andrusiak depart the team. Watch for the 19-year-old to feature heavily in this game.

Potential starters

Roddy Ross (SEA): 4-1-0-1 2.41 GAA, .920 sv% Has played well since signing with the Thunderbirds, will look to get back in the win column following a loss to Lethbridge on Friday.

Dylan Ferguson (KAM): 13-18-2-0 3.18 GAA, .906 sv% Backstopped all four wins on the Blazers current streak. Could be his third game in three nights.

Leading scorers

Zane Frankin (KAM): 22G, 24A Points in his last three games, the shifty speedster has collected 100 WHL points.

Nolan Volcan (SEA): 19G 28A Had five points in three games before last night’s OT loss to Portland. Has put up 221 points in his WHL career

Other games around the DUB

Kootenay ICE (10-31-7-1) at Calgary Hitmen (22-19-3-1)

The Hitmen are just 2 points up on the Wheat Kings for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. They’ve played well in their last 10 going 7-3-0-0. Kootenay is 20 points back with 19 games to play.

Prince George Cougars (16-26-3-2) at Edmonton Oil Kings (25-15-4-4)

Prince George is on a season long 6 game skid and are playing their third game in three nights on the road. Edmonton has not played since Friday and sit one point back of the division leading Red Deer Rebels.

Kelowna Rockets (19-24-3-1) at Vancouver Giants (31-12-2-0)

Kelowna has not been playing their best hockey of late, the team is 2-7-0-1 and now hold a single point lead over the Kamloops Blazers for third in the BC Division. Vancouver has won 8 straight games and has a 14 point cushion over Victoria for the division title.

Lethbridge Hurricanes (25-14-4-4) at Portland Winterhawks (29-13-3-2)

Lethbridge is just one point back for Red Deer for the Central division lead, and were walloped 9-1 last night in Everett. Portland is 8-2-0-0 over their last 10 games and are 9 points behind Everett for first in the US division.

 

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