WSHL WEEKLY NOTES 10.17.18 – WESTERN DIVISION

by Scott Harrington

WSHL WEEKLY NOTES 10.17.18 – WESTERN DIVISION

FRESNO MONSTERS (2-1-0, 6 pts)

@WSHLMonsters

www.FresnoMonsters.com

Nikita Garin notched hat tricks in both of Fresno’s wins over Ontario last weekend.  Garin put up a total of nine points (6-3-9) in the three games.  He is an 18-year-old St. Petersburg native getting his first taste of North American hockey.  It would appear it agrees with him.

Chicago-born goaltender Max Karlenzig played all three games against the Avalanche, making 70 saves and posting a 3.36 goals-against average.  The 19-year-old Karlenzig was the Monsters’ back-up last season, playing in just 16 games.  How he handles the increased workload will go a long way to determining Fresno’s success this season if his heavy usage continues.

19-year-old forward Cole Beckman is well on his way to topping last year’s total of 109 penalty minutes.  The Saskatoon native piled up 35 PIM in the season-opening series against Ontario.

The Monsters are back at home this week, hosting the Long Beach Bombers in a great early-season measuring stick series between two teams with designs on the Western Division championship.

LONG BEACH BOMBERS (2-0-0, 6 pts)

@LBBombersHockey

www.JrBombers.org

The Long Beach Bombers began their hunt for a third straight Western Division title by taking both ends of a home-and-home series from the San Diego Sabers.

A five-goal second period sparked the Bombers to an 8-1 win over the Sabers in San Diego Saturday night.  The game was tied, 1-1, early in the second period but three goals in a span of 1:40 put the Bombers in the driver’s seat.  Diego Gluck started things off with his first of two goals in the game.  Goals by Erik Sillerstrom and Eric Lovstrand followed close behind.

Long Beach head coach and general manager Chris White was happy with how his new recruits responded in the season-opening games.  Eight new Bombers recorded multiple points on the weekend and seven scored a goal.

“I think the one guy that we were really impressed with was Filip Nordin,” said White. “We had high expectations for many of our top new players, and they did not disappoint.”

White is also looking forward to the test against Fresno coming up this weekned.

“I think both teams have a lot of new faces, but any time you get an early-season repeat of the previous Division Championship matchup, it's exciting,” said White.  “Playing in Fresno is always chaotic, so it's going to be a valuable learning experience for many of our new players, regardless of the outcome.”

ONTARIO AVALANCHE (1-2-0, 3 pts)

@TmOntAvs

www.OntarioAvalanche.com

The Ontario Avalanche figured out one way to stop the Fresno Monsters – keep Nikita Garin off the board.  Garin notched hat tricks in the first and last games of the series, but failed to find the net in the middle game, and the Avs managed to win that one.

Brett Ruiz broke a 1-1 tie with 1.1 seconds left in the second period of Friday’s game, then added a second tally early in the third period to give the Avalanche a three-goal lead.  They held on for a 4-2 win behind three points (2-1-3) for Ruiz and 25 saves for Connor Duffy.

Ruiz, who found the net in Saturday’s game as well, collected at least one point in all three games, totaling 3-2-5.

All three Ontario netminders saw action last week with Connor Duffy fairing the best.  The second-year Avalanche goalie stopped 25 of 26 shots in 44 minutes of action in Friday’s win.

 

SAN DIEGO SABERS (2-4-0, 5 pts)

@sdsabershockey

www.SanDiegoSabersHockey.com

It was a busy week for the San Diego Sabers:  Three games in three days in three different cities.

It started off with a game that went to a shootout in Valencia.  The Flyers tied the game with just over five minutes to play, but the Sabers rebounded to claim victory over their hosts.

The Flyers had leads of 2-1 and 3-2, but second period goals from Jakub Vesely and Evgeny Tretyak gave San Diego the lead heading into the third period.

Eimantas Norieka’s second goal of the game for the Flyers got Valencia even and the last 5:10 of regulation and the five-minute overtime went by without any additional scoring, setting the stage for the shootout where Vesely provided the decisive goal.

Marshall McKallip made 39 saves in the game – stopping 26 of 27 shots over the final two periods – to pick up the win for the Sabers.

The Sabers also played a home-and-home series with the Long Beach Bombers, dropping both ends.

San Diego will take this week off before continuing their seven-game homestand when Fresno pays them a visit October 26-28.

VALENCIA FLYERS (0-0-1, 1 pt)

@valenciaflyers

www.ValenciaFlyers.com

Valencia played a single game last week, picking up a single point in a 5-4 shootout loss to visiting San Diego in their season opener.

Eimantas Norieka’s second goal of the game for the Flyers got Valencia even and the last 5:10 of regulation and the five-minute overtime went by without any additional scoring, setting the stage for the shootout where Vesely provided the decisive goal.

Dylan San Augustin and Jakub Kasanicky had two assists apiece and Mack Willy made 32 saves.

The Flyers play a home-and-home series against the Ontario Avalanche this weekend.

--- Compiled by Scott Harrington for Harrington Sports Media