The playoffs for the Quebec and the Western Hockey Leagues continued tonight with game four of the two series featuring Devils prospects.
In the earlier game, the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles trounced the Charlottetown Islanders 6-2 to even up their series at two games apiece. The home team has won each game in this series so far.
Leon Gawanke scored 4:01 into the first to give Cape Breton the early 1-0 lead. This goal came on the power play. Gawanke would go on to record this goal and an assist later on in the game on his way to being named the game’s second star.
The game’s first star, Mitchell Balmas, scored at 9:40 of the first to make it 2-0 Screaming Eagles. He would finish the night with that goal plus two assists for three points.
Charlottetown fought back to tie it with a goal from Jordan Maher midway through the first and one by Nikita Alexandrov midway through the second on the power play. But from here on out, it was all Cape Breton.
Egor Sokolov, the hero from last night, scored the game winner at 13:05 of the second and Derek Gentile (14:38 of the second), Mathias Laferiere (7:34 of the third on the power play) and Brooklyn Kalmikov (13:21 of the third also on the power play) scored insurance goals to make the final score 6-2 Cape Breton.
Laferriere was named the game’s third star with the goal mentioned above and an assist.
In contrast to the WHL series we have been following which has been played extremely clean, this one featured 17 minor penalties and eight misconducts between both teams. Charlottetown was 1-for-3 on the man advantage while Cape Breton was 3-for-8.
Xavier Bernard’s stat line read an even plus/minus, one shot on goal and 2 penalty minutes (a slashing penalty at 3:38 of the first period that led to the first Cape Breton goal of the night) as well as two hits.
Matthew Welsh for the Islanders made 30 saves on 36 shots while Kevin Mandolese for the Screaming Eagles turned aside 23 of the 25 that he faced.
Game five shifts back to Charlottetown on Friday the 29th with a crucial game for both sides.
Meanwhile in the WHL, the Chiefs and the Winterhawks went at it in game four of their series. This was a good one that went to overtime just like game three with the Chiefs winning 4-3 to take a commanding 3-1 series lead.
Ty Smith kicked off the scoring just 31 seconds into the game, giving Spokane a very quick 1-0 lead. But before the second period would begin, the Winterhawks would take the lead.
This started at 9:51 of the first when Brendan De Jong scored to tie and then at 18:30 when Josh Paterson scored to give Portland the 2-1 lead. The Winterhawks would add one more in at the 7:46 mark of the second off the stick of Paterson to take a pretty good 3-1 lead in the game.
But Spokane would fight back. At 3:25 of the third period, they got one from Luke Toporowski to make it 3-2. They would pull goaltender Bailey Brkin for the extra attacker with about two minutes remaining in regulation and it would pay off. Zummack scored with one minute to go in the game to level the contest at three.
In the overtime period, it would only take four minutes and thirty-nine seconds to get a winner. Portland’s Seth Jarvis took a delay of game penalty at the 3:05 mark of OT, putting Spokane on the PP for the third time on the evening. They would find success on this one when Adam Beckman scored to give them the 4-3 victory.
Smith finished the game with the goal (he was originally credited with the secondary assist on the opening goal given to Zummack, but that was later changed), a plus-2 rating and a team-leading five shots on goal (co-leading with Beckman, who also had five shots).
In goal, Brkin made 35 saves on 38 Winterhawk shots while Joel Hofer made 33 saves on 37 Spokane shots. Zummack was named the game’s first star while Paterson of Portland was the second star with the two goals in the losing effort. Clay Hanus, of the Winterhawks, was the third star, registering assists on both of Paterson’s goals.
Spokane finished the night 1-for-3 on the power play, with their crucial game winner coming on the PP. Portland did not have a power play opportunity in the game.
Game five takes place on Saturday, March 30 back in Spokane.