The Spokane Chiefs lost on the road and it sounds like they were lucky it was only 3-2. We have the story from Moose Jaw below.
Moose Jaw Times-Herald
After throwing 40 shots at the Spokane Chiefs goal, the Moose Jaw Warriors were due a little puck luck.
A huge deflection on a Connor Cox point shot ended up producing the game-winning goal as the Warriors beat the Chiefs 3-2 in Western Hockey League action Friday night at the Civic Centre.
“I was really happy with our effort. I thought we competed,” said Warriors head coach Dave Hunchak. “Spokane was a very physical team and I thought we responded well to that. We worked extremely hard and as a result we were granted a fortunate break on the Cox goal to get our two points.”
Cox one-timed a rolling puck and his shot looked to be going both high and wide of the target before striking the stick of Chiefs’ right winger Mitch Holmberg and hitting the back of the net.
“We’re happy that our hard work paid off in the end,” said Warriors winger Danny Gayle. “We had a lot more chances than they did obviously, but with hard work came that lucky break at the end of the game.”
While it was an unfortunate way to lose the first game of their six-game road swing, Chiefs head coach Don Nachbaur felt the outcome was a fair indication of the play.
“We didn’t deserve to win that game,” said Nachbaur. “They out-played us. We had way too many passengers looking out the back window of the bus tonight.
“We weren’t ready for the speed of the game and I thought a lot of guys played really timid.”
Dylan Hood gave the Warriors a 1-0 lead with his seventh of the season.
Anthony Bardaro tied the game early in the second period, before Gayle’s second goal in as many nights put the Warriors back in front.
The Warriors led 2-1, but had badly out-played the Chiefs through 40 minutes. They were out-shooting the Chiefs 34-11 after two periods and began the third period with a brief two-man power play and 91 seconds of further power play time.
“It’s the same story — we create and we have to finish,” said Hunchak. “We have to work that hard to create opportunities.
“It’s nothing fancy — traffic to the net and get the puck to the points and shoot from everywhere.”
After the penalty kills, the Chiefs began to pick up their game. Levko Koper tied the game on the power play after pretty pass from Tyler Johnson.
“(In the third period) we were starting to get to loose pucks that we weren’t getting to in the first 40 minutes, but you can’t play 20 minutes in this league. That’s the bottom line,” said Nachbaur.
The bottom line for the Warriors was that for the second game in a row they found a way to pick up two points regardless of the circumstances. The Tribe are now 6-8-0-1 on the season and have moved into seventh place in the Eastern Conference. They host the Prince Albert Raiders tonight (7 p.m., Civic Centre).
“It’s definitely a turn around from the start of the year. In a couple of the games that were tight we were dropping the points and it’s nice to have it turn around and fall in our favour for once,” said Gayle who had a goal and an assist.
Chiefs goalie James Reid made 40 saves and was named the first star. Thomas Heemskerk made 21 saves to earn the win for the Warriors.
1. Moose Jaw, Hood 7 (Edwards, Howden) 6:39
Penalties — Cowan Spo (goaltender interference) McIlrath MJ (roughing) 0:38, Howden MJ (slashing) 9:21, Kramer Spo (roughing) 19:48.
2. Spokane, Bardaro 3 (Brassart, Holmberg) 2:05
3. Moose Jaw, Gayle 2 (Honejsek, Fioretti) 11:39
Penalties — Kichton Spo (tripping) 5:08, Mort Spo (slashing) McFaull MJ (goaltender interference) 8:48, Kichton Spo (holding) 18:04, Johnson Spo (high sticking) 19:32.
4. Spokane, Koper 5 (Johnson, Gal) 5:54 (pp)
5. Moose Jaw, Cox 3 (Gayle, McIlrath) 15:40
Penalties — McFaull MJ (elbowing) 5:32, Hood MJ (interference) 9:43, Gal Spo Bowman MJ (roughing) 16:10, McFaull MJ (hooking) 17:07.
Shots on goal by
Spokane 7 4 12 — 23
Moose Jaw 15 19 9 — 43
Goal — Spokane: Reid (L, 5-6); Moose Jaw: Heemskerk (W, 5-8-0-1).
Power plays (goals-chances) — Spokane: 1-5; Moose Jaw: 0-4.
Referees — Chris Crich, Chad Williams. Linesmen — Jonny Bast, Shane Smith.
Attendance — 2,556.