Hurricanes Edge ICE 2-1 to Split Season Series
Lethbridge, AB – The Lethbridge Hurricanes returned to the ENMAX Centre on Friday as they earned a 2-1 victory over the WHL-leading Winnipeg ICE.
The Hurricanes continued a stretch of six games in six different cities returning for just the one home game. Lethbridge entered after posting a 1-1-2-0 record on a four-game road trip. Winnipeg, who entered with a league-high 33 wins and 67 points, had an early scoring chance which drew a penalty just 12-seconds into the game. The ICE failed to score on the ensuing man-advantage. Lethbridge opened the scoring in the final minute of the first period on a power play of their own as Hayden Smith tapped home a centering pass from Chase Pauls to make it a 1-0 Hurricane lead; Joe Arntsen earned the second assist as the ‘Canes held the one-goal lead after twenty minutes. Lethbridge outshot Winnipeg 11-10 in the first period.
The teams traded chances in the second period which saw both Bryan Thomson and ICE netminder Mason Beaupit play outstanding turning aside all 16 combined shots in the period. The Hurricanes had a great chance in the final minutes of the middle frame with a lengthy five-on-three power play opportunity, but an Arntsen shot off the post and a strong kill by Winnipeg kept the score at 1-0 after forty minutes of play.
In the third period, the ICE tied the game just 33-seconds in as Matthew Savoie – who knocked down a Hurricanes regroup pass – center to overage forward Connor McClennon who tapped home his 23rd goal of the season to tie the game 1-1. Lethbridge pushed back and found another go-ahead goal as Smith knocked down a pass by the Winnipeg netminder behind the net before centering to Blake Swetlikoff who made no mistake potting his eighth goal of the season to put the Hurricanes back in front 2-1 with 9:16 remaining in the game. The ICE pulled the goaltender in the dying minutes and Thomson made a miraculous glove save diving across the crease to rob Savoie preserving the one-goal victory as the ‘Canes hung on to the 2-1 win.
Lethbridge was outshot 29-28 in the game by Winnipeg. The Hurricanes went 1/5 with the power play while the ICE went 0/2 with the extra man.
Three stars of the game were:
1) ‘Canes – #30 Bryan Thomson (28-saves)
2) ICE – #30 Mason Beaupit (26-saves)
3) ‘Canes – #22 Hayden Smith (1 goal, 1 assist)
The victory for the Hurricanes was their second win against the ICE this season as they split the four-game season series going 2-2-0-0 against Winnipeg. Lethbridge improved to 4-1-3-1 in their last nine games while lifting their overall record to 25-16-3-2 on the season.
The Hurricanes will complete the stretch of six games in six different cities on Sunday afternoon when they visit the Edmonton Oil Kings at 4:00pm at Rogers Place. Lethbridge will return to the ENMAX Centre on Wednesday at 7:00pm when they welcome the Moose Jaw Warriors. Individual game tickets can be purchased in person at the ENMAX Centre Ticket Centre, the Yates Memorial Theatre Ticket Centre, by calling 403-329-SEAT (7328) and online at www.lethbridgehurricanes.com.