After holding the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies close in their first loss of the 2016 Memorial Cup tournament, the Brandon Wheat Kings and John Quenneville went into their second game versus the London Knights looking to nail down a “W.”
What they got was shell-shocked in a 9-1 rout at the Enmax Centrium tonight.
The Knights, champions of the Ontario Hockey League, got a hat trick from Christian Dvorak, plus goals from Cliff Pu, Aaron Berisha, Matthew Tkachuk, JJ Piccinich, Max Jones and Daniel Bernhardt. Dvorak’s first and second goals both came on the power play, as did Berisha’s and Bernhardt’s.
Predictably, Dvorak was named the game’s first star. London’s Mitchell Marner was the second as he had four assists and Knights’ defenseman Jacob Graves was the third star as he was a plus-2 on the night.
Brandon’s lone goal came from Stelio Mattheos at 6:26 of the second period. Ivan Provorov and John Quenneville had the assists on the goal.
Brandon went through two goalies: Jordin Papirny, who started and Logan Thompson, who came in for the third period. The goaltenders combined to make 22 saves on 31 London shots. Amazingly, the Wheat Kings actually outshot the Knights with 36 shots. London goaltenders Tyler Parsons and Brendan Burke (who played the final 12:22 of the game) made 35 saves.
Quenneville’s stat line read: one assist, a minus-3 plus/minus rating and four shots on net. He won the only faceoff that he took.
Head coach Kelly McCrimmon will now try to get the Wheat Kings up for their next game, to be played Wednesday against the Red Deer Rebels. Hopefully, the Wheat Kings can bounce back and show heart as they try to put this nasty loss in their rear view mirror.
Also, congratulations to Canada for winning gold at the World Championship and to Finland for winning silver. Both teams played well throughout the tournament and truly earned their place in the finals.