The record will show the Saskatoon Blades had more wins and more points for a fourth consecutive season in 2017-18.
But, those records will also reveal that they missed the Western Hockey League playoffs for a fifth straight campaign.
The hoped-for return to the WHL post-season came to an end Tuesday night in Western Manitoba when the Wheat Kings kept replying quickly to any Bridge City Bunch scoring in a 5-3 Brandon victory. A seventh loss in their last eight games means the 32-33-4 Blue and Gold can’t catch Prince Albert…trailing the Raiders by eight points with only three games remaining to play. The Raiders had a nine-game winning streak ended in a 2-1 shootout loss in Moose Jaw.
“We had some really good momentum shifts,” explained Blades head coach Dean Brockman. “(We) carried the play a lot of the time and then when we got rewarded for our work, we let off the pedal for that brief moment of time and they’d come down and score. That’s the cardinal sin. The next shift after a goal is so important and probably even the next one after that is even more important.”
Logan Christensen opened the game scoring, but Linden McCorrister erased that lead just 91 seconds later in the first period. In the second frame, Max Gerlach tied the score at 2-2, only to have former Blades defenceman Schael Higson put the Wheaties back out front just 2:18 later. In the third stanza, Eric Florchuk got Saskatoon back to within a goal at 4-3, but Evan Weinger potted the final marker of the night just 88 seconds afterwards.
Marcus Sekundiak and Ty Lewis added the other goals for Brandon, now 38-27-5 for the season…one point back of Regina for third place in the East Division and five points ahead of P.A. in the first wild-card post-season berth.
Once again, Dylan Myskiw was stellar in goal for the Wheat Kings, stopping 40 shots as the Bridge City Bunch held a 43-28 advantage on the shot clock.
The Blades continue on to Swift Current to tangle with the Broncos Wednesday. Game time is 7 p.m. with the broadcast at 6:30 on 92-9, THE BULL. Following is the official game summary from the WHL...
Saskatoon Blades 3 at Brandon Wheat Kings 5 - Status: Final Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - Westoba Place - Brandon, MB