Mike Trafford

Hateful Eight for Lethbridge

The Lethbridge Hurricanes (7-12-1-0) rolled into Kamloops looking to end a seven-game losing streak. During this streak the ‘Cane have allowed 40 goals against (5.71/game), while only scoring 18 (2.57/game).  The Kamloops Blazers (9-13) have struggled at home (3-8) and the ‘Canes have struggled on the road (1-6), so something had to give.


Ondrej Vala would open the scoring for the Blazers just over five minutes into the first period. The Blazers had just killed off Vala’s high sticking penalty. Garrett Pilon drove hard down the right wing and fired a low shot. Stuart Skinner managed to kick out the shot but the rebound would land right on Vala’s stick. Late in the first period Lethbridge’s Josh Tarzwell would land a big clean hit on big Jermaine Loewen, sending him to the ice. Tate Olson however, would take a hooking penalty on the play. The potent Blazers power play from the night before would not be able to capitalize.

The Blazers would increase their lead 4:49 into the second period. Luke Zazula would start a rush from his own end and stay deep helping to pin the puck in the offensive zone. Quinn Benjafield and Jermaine Loewen would manage to free the puck to Nick Chyzowski. Chyzowski would push out from the corner and manage to jam a puck past Skinner.

Midway through the second frame Zazula would take a hooking penalty on a Hurricanes rush. Lethbridge would win an offensive zone face-off late in the power play leading to a Tate Olson point shot. Tanner Nagel would get his stick on the shot, redirecting it past Dylan Ferguson. The goal deflated the Blazers and the large crowd at the Sandman Centre, giving the momentum to the visiting team. The ‘Canes would hold on to the momentum by killing an almost one-minute Blazers five-on-three power play.

Jordy Bellerive would score his team leading, tenth goal of the season less than three minutes into the third. Bellerive would bang home a loose puck at the side of the net to tie the game. Lethbridge now had full control of the play with the Blazers looking tired and flat. Giorgio Estephan seemed to have the puck on a string throughout the third period, making Blazers defenders look like pylons. Ferguson would be solid through the middle of the last frame, holding the score at two a piece.

With less than five to play in regulation Quinn Benjafield kept the puck in the zone and found Brodi Stuart in the high slot. Stuart would wrist a shot that would beat Skinner stick side, restoring the Kamloops lead. Three minutes later, Stuart would make a good defensive play at his own blue line. Stuart would move the puck up ice to Pilon who flipped a soft pass in front of the net. Benjafield would jam a loose puck to the back of the net, giving him his second insurance goal in two games. Benjafield would pick up his fourth point of the night assisting on a Chyzowski empty net goal. Final score Kamloops 5 – Lethbridge 2.


Three Stars:

  1. Dylan Ferguson (25 saves)
  2. Quinn Benjafield (1g, 3a)
  3. Nick Chyzowski (2g)

Kamloops 0/3 PP 30SOG

Lethbridge 1/3 PP 27SOG

Lethbridge will look to end the eight game losing streak in Victoria on Tuesday night against the BC Division leaders. Kamloops isn’t back in action until Friday night when they host the Central Division leading Medicine Hat Tigers.

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