Shamrocks look for series lead tonight in Killarney

ATTACKING THE ELKS’ NET – The Shamrocks attack the Elks’ net looking for a goal while the Souris defenders slam the door. Killarney’s Aubrey Chapman (right) ended up with the game winner on Friday night, while Jesse Bernard (background) led the offence for the Shamrocks with five points in the 6-3 victory. Killarney dropped game two in Souris but look to take the series lead tonight in game three at 8:15 in the Shamrock Centre’s Don Paterson Arena.


League winning Shamrocks look for lead in second round series tonight


The pennant-winning Killarney Shamrocks will look for the lead in game three of their second round playoff series against the Souris Elks tonight at the Shamrock Centre.

The Shamrocks opened up the series last Friday with a 6-3 victory here at home. Aubrey Chapman had what was the game-winning goal, scored early in the second period. Chapman and Reid Gow added third period markers to salt away the first game win.

Coming out of the starting blocks with guns a-blazing, the Elks opened up a 2-0 first period lead on goals by Andrew Brigden and Carter Suski, before Ryan Howatt and Jesse Bernard tallied, making it a 2-2 ball game at the end of the first.

Daniel Stagg opened up a 3-2 Shamrocks lead when he notched the first second period goal before Chapman and Gow took over. Joel Strachan of the Elks had scored at the 3:59 mark of the third period to narrow the gap to 4-3, but that was all she wrote for the Elks on this night.

Jesse Bernard had a five-point night to lead the Shamrocks attack, while the always rock-solid, often spectacular, Brian Archibald notched the “w” in the Shamrock cage. Kris Westblom took the loss.

Shamrocks first game scoring summary:

  1. Ryan Howatt (Gow, Bernard)
  2. Jesse Bernard (Gow, Chapman)
  3. Daniel Stagg (Haney)
  4. Aubrey Chapman (Bernard, Howatt)
  5. Aubrey Chapman (Bernard, Archibald)
  6. Reid Gow (Bernard)

Game two in Souris on Saturday night saw the Elks edge the Shamrocks 4-3 to hand the Shamrocks their first defeat of the 2016/17 season. This was almost a complete reversal of Friday night as the Shamrocks grabbed a 3-2 first period lead before the Elks rallied to post the victory.

After Brett Arbuckle knotted the game at 3-3 in the second period, Brett Locke was the hero for the Elks, as he tallied his second goal of the game at the 16:35 mark of the final frame to give the Elks the victory. Jordan Grieg had the other Elks marker.

Reid Gow, Lane Ganske, and Isaac Friesen had all scored in the first period for the Shamrocks, giving them the 3-2 first period lead. But it was not enough on this night!

2016/17 Tiger Hills League scoring leader Isaac Friesen led the Shamrocks offensively, as he had a goal and two assists. Other Shamrocks who picked up assists in this game were Reid Gow, Bryce Lamb, Lane Ganske, Jamie Schultz, and Brayden Cuthbert with two.

Former NHL draftee Kris Westblom made a whopping 49 saves in the Elks cage to get the “w”, while Brian Archibald made 23 saves for the Shamrocks, as the Rocks out-shot the Elks 52-27.

From the Blue-Line: Games six and seven respectively (if necessary) will go on Tuesday, February 28 in Souris, and on Wednesday, March 1 in Killarney…In the other West Division semi-final, the Hartney Blues currently lead the Boissevain Border Kings 3-1. In the East Division of the THHL, the Carberry Plainsmen lead the Minnedosa Bombers 3-1, and the Neepawa Farmers lead the Cartwright Clippers 3-1…The Shamrocks were missing key players Brayden Cuthbert, Colton Magwood and Clayton Heinrichs for personal reasons in game one of their series, but it didn’t deter the pennant winners…Looking at game two, 52 shots by the Shamrocks, usually good enough to win unless you’re facing an elite tender like Kris Westblom. Will they need more traffic in front? Maybe Colton Magwood?… Lots of Shamrock firepower; you’ve got to believe they’ll find a way, especially on the NHL-sized ice in Souris town…Okay, game four of the series goes in Souris on Friday, and game five of the series back here in Killarney this Saturday, February 25…Catch the action!