Welcome to the daily WHL playoff recap focusing on the Eastern Conference. Here is a look back at the day that was:
Brandon Wheat Kings (3) vs Red Deer Rebels (1)
The return of Marcus Kallionkieli made a huge difference for the Brandon Wheat Kings. Kallionkieli scored two goals, both on the power play, and added an assist as the Wheat Kings beat the Rebels 3-1. It was Kallionkieli first game of the series. He had 27 points in 36 games this regular season.
Jace Isley opened the scoring for the Rebels at the 7:44 mark of the first, before Trae Johnson tied it with his first at 13:01 of the first. Kallionkieli put the Wheat Kings ahead for good with a powerplay goal at the 18:24 mark of the second. It was the first powerplay goal for the Wheat Kings this series. Kallionkieli added a powerplay goal into an empty net to make it 3-1.
After going scoreless on their first 17 power plays, the Wheat Kings went two for five on the powerplay. The Rebels were zero for three. Ethan Kruger and Chase Coward continue to put on a strong goaltending display. Kruger got the win with 26 saves. Coward made 25 saves for the loss for the Rebels. Game 5 of the now tied series is in Red Deer on Friday night.
Prince Albert Raiders (3) vs Winnipeg ICE (1)
Taikhon Chaika made 26 saves and the Prince Albert Raiders stayed alive as they beat the Winnipeg ICE 3-1. The game was scoreless after one but in the second, Remy Aquilon scored on the powerplay to open the scoring for the Raiders to take 1-0 lead. It was the Raiders first lead of the series.
The Raiders extended their lead to 2-0 when Eric Johnston scored at 1:06 of the third. The ICE got a late powerplay goal from Mikey Milne to cause Raider fans some stress, but Sloan Stanick relieved that stress with an empty net goal to seal it at 3-1.
It’s the first time this series that the Raiders scored more than two goals. It was also the first time this series the ICE scored less than three goals. The Raiders were able to hold the ICE to just five shots on goal in the third period. Daniel Hauser made 20 saves for the ICE. Game Five will be on Friday at the Wayne Fleming Arena.
Saskatoon Blades (5) vs Moose Jaw Warriors (3)
The Blades finally got their first two goal lead in the series in Game 4. Egor Sidirov scored at 17:39 to give the Blades a 1-0 lead, while Kyle Crnkovic scored his first of the series with ten seconds to go in the period to give the Blades the 2-0 leas after the first period.
The Warriors cut the lead in half midway through the second thank to Maxximus Wanner who scored his second to make it 2-1. Noah Boyko restored the two goal lead for the Blades mid-second period before Wanner potted his second of the period at 18:18 to make 3-2 Blades after two periods. Ryder Korcziak tied it for the Warriors at 3-3 at the 2:54, before Rhett Rhinehart got his first of the series to give the Blades the lead for good at 8:37. Crnkovic locked it down scoring with 29 seconds to go.
Tyler Parr had two assists while Rhinehart added an assist with his goal for the Blades. Cordel Larson had two assists for the Warriors. Nolan Meier was strong in goal for the Blades with 32 saves for the win. Carl Tetachuk made 25 saves for the Warriors. Game Five is Friday at Mosaic Place in Moose Jaw where Moose Jaw will look to finish off the series.