North American Juniors

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 3-31-18

Western Hockey League

#8 Prince Albert Raiders 5 @ #1 Moose Jaw Warriors 1 (Game 5)
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals
Warriors lead series 3-2

D Oleg Sosunov, MJ: 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM, 1 SOG
Playoff Totals: 5 GP, 0-0-0, -1, 2 PIM
Season Totals: 71 GP, 7-19-26, +35, 62 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (MHL-Russia): 32 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 79 PIM

Back at the Mosaic Place in Moose Jaw for Game 5, and the Warriors poised to clinch on home ice. But the Raiders didn’t get the memo, as Prince Albert jumped out to a 3-0 lead and didn’t look back. Sean Montgomery (undrafted) scored twice to pace the Raiders. There is a quick turnaround for Game 6 back in Prince Albert on Easter Sunday evening.

Juniors Game Night: 3-29-18

United States Hockey League

** Note: Cole Guttman (Dubuque) was placed on injured reserved on December 22nd following the completion of the World Junior A Challenge tournament.

Omaha Lancers 4 @ Muskegon Lumberjacks 2

D Nick Perbix , OMA: 0-0-0, +2, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 50 GP, 4-20-24, +12, 32 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 10-30-40, 6 PIM
Committed to: St. Cloud State University

Cole Gallant (Western Michigan commit) scored twice for the Lancers, first the equalizer and then the game-winner as Omaha doubled up the Lumberjacks. Zach Driscoll (Bemidji State commit) was inserted into the crease at the 2:34 mark of the 2nd period after Muskegon scored the 2-1 go-ahead goal on 16 year-old starter Christian Sbaraglia (Penn State commit). Driscoll stopped all 24 shots and got the back-door win after Omaha’s second-half rally.

Tri-City Storm 2 @ Sioux City Musketeers 5

F Sammy Walker, SC: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals (USHL): 10 GP, 0-6-6, -4, 4 PIM
’16-’17 Totals (USHL): 4 GP, 0-0-0, -3, 6 PIM
Season Totals (HS): 31 GP, 35-44-79, 16 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 22-24-46, 6 PIM
Committed to: University of Minnesota

The Walker-Koepke-Mills line continues to produce for the Musketeers with Walker and Dylan Mills (Niagara commit) setting up Cole Koepke (Minnesota-Duluth commit) for his first goal of the game as part of a Sioux City three-goal 1st period. Mills notched his goal in the first, as well as Finnish University of Wisconsin commit Sampo Ranta (2018 draft eligible) netting the first of his two goals. Koepke would seal the game with an empty netter shortie with 73 seconds remaining. Walker is a point-per-game player in the six games since rejoining Sioux City, but still looking for his first goal.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 3-30-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

#4 Halifax Mooseheads 4 @ #13 Baie-Comeau Drakkar 0 (Game 5)
Round of 16
Mooseheads wins series 4-1

C/W Otto Somppi, HAL: Injury Scratch
Playoff Totals: 1 GP, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 59 GP, 28-55-83, +39, 28 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 60 GP, 17-24-41, -7, 28 PIM

The Mooseheads punched their ticket to the quarterfinals behind a 41-save shutout by Alexis Gravel (2018 draft eligible), the #1 ranked North American goalie prospect. Arnaud Durandeau (NYI, 2017 6th round pick) notched a pair of goals and Benoit Olivier-Groulx tallied three assists to pace Halifax. Somppi remains sidelined with that upper body injury he sustained midway through Game #1.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 3-29-18

Western Hockey League

#3 Kelowna Rockets 3 @ #7 Tri-City Americans 5 (Game 4)
Western Conference Quarterfinals
Americans win series 4-0

D Cal Foote, KEL: 0-1-1, E, 2 PIM, 2 SOG
Playoffs Totals: 4 GP, 1-4-5, -4, 4 PIM
Season Totals: 60 GP, 19-51-70, +31, 46 PIM
‘15-‘16 Totals: 71 GP, 6-51-57, +39, 41 PIM

Morgan Geekie (CAR, 2017 3rd round pick) notched his second hat trick of the series, leading the Americans in a shocking sweep of Kelowna and advancing to the WHL Western Conference semifinals. Dillon Dube (CGY, 2016 2nd round pick) scored twice for the Rockets, once on the power play in which Foote tallied his fourth assist of the series and his fifth point. Kelowna fought hard to keep the series alive, knotting the game three times at 1-1, 2-2, and 3-3, before Geekie scored two of this three goals in the last minute of the game to give Tri-City the dramatic series sweep in front of 3,000+ fans at the Toyota Center.

The loss all but draws a close to the junior career of the WHL Western Conference Defenseman of the Year and Bolt prospect Cal Foote. He will surely join the Lightning’s AHL affiliate in Syracuse as that team finishes up their regular season and prepares for what would hope to be a deep Calder Cup playoff run. Foote brings the potential of a big minute eater for that team's Top 4 and player that can be the motor to an offense in transition. And with Foote turning 20 on December 13, 2018, he will be eligible to begin AHL play for the 2018-19 season out of camp this fall, so there is really no reason for Foote to return to juniors for an overage season after racking up 70 points and goal shy of 20.

In addition to an ATO contract with Syracuse for the remainder of this season, I’m sure a three-year entry level contract will happen rather quickly now that Foote and the Rockets have been eliminated from Memorial Cup contention. And with the organization lean on right-handed defensemen, Andrej Sustr as a pending UFA at season’s end, and Jake Dotchin perhaps hitting a ceiling in his own development, a spectacular NHL camp this fall could even see Foote make the Lightning squad, especially if Braydon Coburn is dealt at the NHL draft in June. But surely by 2019, with the contracts of Coburn, Girardi, Stralman, and McDonagh expiring, Foote’s time in Syracuse will likely be a short one.

Juniors Game Night: 3-28-18

United States Hockey League

** Note: Cole Guttman (Dubuque) was placed on injured reserved on December 22nd following the completion of the World Junior A Challenge tournament.

Tri-City Storm 1 @ Omaha Lancers 2 (OT) (Sunday)

D Nick Perbix , OMA: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 7 SOG
Season Totals: 48 GP, 4-20-24, +10, 32 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 10-30-40, 6 PIM
Committed to: St. Cloud State University

After falling to Fargo in a couple of road stinkers, the Lancers returned home last Sunday and beat the Storm in OT. Perbix notched his 20th assist of the season, setting up the OT game-winner, and fired a game-high seven shots on net.

Fargo Force 3 @ Sioux City Musketeers 1 (Sunday)
Sioux City Musketeers 3 @ Waterloo Black Hawks 6 (Saturday)

F Sammy Walker, SC: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals (USHL): 9 GP, 0-5-5, -5, 4 PIM
’16-’17 Totals (USHL): 4 GP, 0-0-0, -3, 6 PIM
Season Totals (HS): 31 GP, 35-44-79, 16 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 22-24-46, 6 PIM
Committed to: University of Minnesota

Walker’s four-game point streak came to an end last Sunday as Fargo put the clamp down on the Musketeers with US World Junior A Challenge goalie Ryan Bischel (Clarkson commit) making 29 saves for the Force.

On Saturday, Walker extended his point streak to four games, assisting on two of Sioux City’s three goals. Waterloo jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the 1st period, but the Musketeers came back, scoring three straight to draw within one before the Black Hawks shut the door in the 3rd. Joey Cassetti (Boston College commit) scored twice for Waterloo to pace the Black Hawks.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 3-28-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

#1 Blainville-Boisbriand Armada 4 @ #16 Val-d’Or Foreurs 1 (Game 4)
Round of 16
Armada wins series 4-0

C Alex Barré-Boulet , BLB: Did not play
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 2-2-4, +6, 4 PIM
Season Totals: 65 GP, 53-66-116, +28, 67 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 65 GP, 29-52-81, +10, 42 PIM

Barre-Boulet missed his second straight game, but the Armada didn’t miss a beat behind a goal and three points from Alexander Katerinakis (2018 draft eligible). After a scoreless 1st period, the two teams traded 2nd period goals before Drake Batherson (OTT, 2017 4th round pick) scored just past the midpoint of the 3rd for what would be the game and series winner. Katerinakis scored and assisted on two empty netters late in the game as Val-d’Or threw everything at the Armada to keep the series alive. The Armada are the first to punch their ticket to the quarterfinals. The QMJHL playoff bracket is re-seeded after the first round, so it may be later in the weekend before Blainville-Boisbraind’s next opponent is named.

#1 Blainville-Boisbriand Armada 4 @ #16 Val-d’Or Foreurs 2 (Game 3)

On Tuesday night, the series shifted to Val-d’Or for Game 3, giving a spark to the Foreurs who twice led 1-0 and 2-1 in the 2nd period after a scoreless 1st period. But the Armada scored three straight down the stretch to take a 3-0 series lead. Barre-Boulet was scratched with an apparent injury.

#4 Halifax Mooseheads 8 @ #13 Baie-Comeau Drakkar 1 (Game 4)
Round of 16
Mooseheads leads series 3-1

C/W Otto Somppi, HAL: Injury Scratch
Playoff Totals: 1 GP, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 59 GP, 28-55-83, +39, 28 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 60 GP, 17-24-41, -7, 28 PIM

A night after losing Game 3 in Baie-Comeau, the Mooseheads came out firing on all cylinders, running up a snowman on the scoreboard and splitting the games on Drakkar home ice. Blue Jackets free agent signee Maxime Fortier scored twice and Xavier Parent (2019 draft eligible) notched three assists to pace Halifax to the win. Somppi missed this third straight game. Both teams take a night off before coming back in Baie-Comeau for Game 5 on Friday night.

#4 Halifax Mooseheads 2 @ #13 Baie-Comeau Drakkar 4 (Game 3)
#13 Baie-Comeau Drakkar 3 @ #4 Halifax Mooseheads 5 (Game 2)

After getting injured in Game 1, Somppi was an injury scratch for Game 2 on Saturday night, but the Mooseheads powered through without Otto to take a 2-0 series lead. Halifax got goals from five players and Joel Bishop (undrafted) led the way with a goal and three points. The Drakkar twice tied the game, before Benoit Olivier-Groulx (2018 draft eligible) and Xavier Parent (2019 draft eligible) scored goals in the 3rd period to deliver a Halifax win.

On Tuesday night, the series shifted to Baie-Comeau and the Drakkar did not disappoint the 1800+ fans at the Centre Henry-Leonard, delivering a 4-2 win behind two goals from Gabriel Fortier (2018 draft eligible). The Mooseheads got off to a 1st period 2-0 lead, but the Drakkar scored four unanswered. Somppi was an injury scratch for the second straight playoff game.

Ontario Hockey League

#1 Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 5 @ #8 Saginaw Spirit 3 (Game 4)
Western Conference Quarterfinals
Greyhounds wins series 4-0

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 3-0-3, +1, 0 PIM, 4 SOG, *First Star*
Playoff Totals: 4 GP, 6-3-9, +5, 4 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 42-43-85, +53, 30 PIM
’16-’17 Season: 66 GP, 35-29-64, +18, 46 PIM

W Taylor Raddysh, SSM: 0-0-0, -1, 2 PIM, 2 SOG, 0/5 FO
Playoff Totals: 4 GP, 4-2-6, +1, 4 PIM
Season Totals (SSM): 28 GP, 18-21-39, +14, 14 PIM
Season Totals (ER): 30 GP, 15-29-44, +10, 16 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 33-50-83, +24, 30 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals: 58 GP, 42-67-109, +67, 37 PIM

The Soo punched their ticket to the Western Conference semifinals behind an empty net hat trick by Lightning prospect Boris Katchouk, who now leads the OHL playoffs in goals and points. Katchouk earned the First Star after knotting the score 1-1 with his first goal, and then a power play goals later before getting the hat trick with empty net insurance marker with 71 seconds remaining with the Spirit pulling out all stops in hopes of extending the series. The OHL reseeds the bracket after each round, so it will be later in the weekend before the Soo’s next opponent is determined.

#8 Saginaw Spirit 0 @ #1 Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 8 (Game 2)
#1 Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 7 @ #8 Saginaw Spirit 3 (Game 3)

In Game 2 on Sunday afternoon, the Soo pasted a snowman on the scoreboard and Matthew Villalta (LAK, 2017 3rd round pick) pitched a 21-save shutout. Morgan Frost (PHI, 2017 1st round pick) and Jack Kopacka (ANA, 2016 4th round pick) each scored a pair of goals, and Katchouk scored a goal and an assist, both on the power play.

On Monday night, the series shifted to Saginaw for Game 3 and the Soo continuing to light the lamp, scoring seven goals to take a 3-0 stranglehold on the series. The Wonder Twins, Bolt prospects Taylor Raddysh and Boris Katchouk, earned First and Second Stars respectively, with both players notching a pair of goals and Raddysh three points on the night. With the scored tied 2-2 after two periods, Katchouk and Hayden Verbeek scored 13 seconds apart to break open the game, with the Soo going on to scored three more times in the 3rd. Verbeek, nephew of Lightning AGM, and Director of Player Personnel Pat Verbeek, signed a free agent three-year entry level contract late last week with the Montreal Canadiens. Both of Raddysh’s goals were on the power play.

Western Hockey League

#3 Kelowna Rockets 3 @ #7 Tri-City Americans 5 (Game 3)
Western Conference Quarterfinals
Americans lead series 3-0

D Cal Foote, KEL: 0-0-0, -1, 1 PIM, 1 SOG
Playoffs Totals: 3 GP, 1-3-4, -4, 2 PIM
Season Totals: 60 GP, 19-51-70, +31, 46 PIM
‘15-‘16 Totals: 71 GP, 6-51-57, +39, 41 PIM

After sweeping the Rockets 2-0 in Kelowna, the series shifted to the Toyota Center in Kennewick, Washington, but Morgan Geekie (CAR, 2017 3rd round pick) kept it rolling scoring his 5th and 6th goals of the series and 2017 #9 overall Red Wings pick Michael Rasmussen scored and notched a three-point night. The Americans now have a shocking 3-0 stranglehold on the series and can clinch a spot in the Western Conference semifinals with a sweep on Thursday night.

#7 Tri-City Americans 9 @ #3 Kelowna Rockets 7 (Game 2)

Game 2 last Saturday night in Kelowna was a wild affair, with the teams combining for sixteen goals. Bolt prospect Cal Foote earned First Star honors in a losing effort with a goal and three assists, and Kole Lind (VAN, 2017 2nd round pick) scored twice and also had a four point night for the Rockets. But the Nolan Yaremko (undrafted) would lead the Americans with an empty hat trick and Morgan Geekie (CAR, 2017 3rd round pick), Michael Rasmussen (DET, 2017 1st round pick), and Isaac Johnson (2018 draft eligible) would all score twice and notch four points each

#1 Moose Jaw Warriors 2 @ #8 Prince Albert Raiders 0 (Game 4)
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals
Warriors lead series 3-1

D Oleg Sosunov, MJ: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Playoff Totals: 4 GP, 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 71 GP, 7-19-26, +35, 62 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (MHL-Russia): 32 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 79 PIM

Brody Willms pitched a 32-save shutout for the Warriors, as Moose Jaw takes a 3-1 lead in the series. Game 5 shifts back to the Mosaic Place Saturday night, with the Raiders facing elimination.

#8 Prince Albert Raiders 2 @ #1 Moose Jaw Warriors 3 (OT) (Game 2)
#1 Moose Jaw Warriors 5 @ #8 Prince Albert Raiders 4 (Game 4)

In Game 2 last Saturday night, former Lighting prospect Brett Howden who was traded to the Rangers organization at the deadline in the McDonagh and Miller trade, scored twice for the Warriors to help secure Moose Jaw’s first win of the series.

For Game 3, the series moved to Prince Albert Tuesday night and saw Arizona Coyote free agent signee Brayden Burke score twice and Howden adding a goal and an assist to pace the Warriors to a 2-1 series lead.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 3-23-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

#16 Val-d’Or Foreurs 1 @ #1 Blainville-Boisbriand Armada 5
Round of 16
Armada leads series 2-0

C Alex Barré-Boulet , BLB: 1-1-2, +3, 2 PIM, 11 SOG, 7/14 FO
Season Totals: 65 GP, 53-66-116, +28, 67 PIM
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 2-2-4, +6, 4 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 65 GP, 29-52-81, +10, 42 PIM

Barre-Boulet assisted on linemate Alexandre Alain’s (undrafted) goal just 10 seconds into Game #2 and Alain would score again on the power just 74 seconds before the end of the 1st as the Armada jumped to an early 2-0 lead. Alain earned First Star honors for the second straight game and already has 4 goals in the playoffs. Barre-Boulet would later score a goal of his own in the 2nd and Drake Batherson (OTT, 2017 4th round pick) would notch a goal and two assists as the Armada dug a two-loss series hole for the Foreurs. The series shifts to the Centre Air Creebec in Val-d’Or for Game #3 on Tuesday night.

#13 Baie-Comeau Drakkar 2 @ #4 Halifax Mooseheads 5
Round of 16
Mooseheads lead series 1-0

C/W Otto Somppi, HAL: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIMs, 0 SOG, 2/5 FO
Season Totals: 59 GP, 28-55-83, +39, 28 PIM
Playoff Totals: 1 GP, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 60 GP, 17-24-41, -7, 28 PIM

The kickoff of the 2018 QMJHL playoffs continued Friday with Game #1 of the series between #13 seed Baie-Comeau Drakkar against #4 seed Halifax Mooseheads. Halifax finished second in the Maritimes Division, just a scant three points back from division winner Acadie-Bathurst Titan.

Bolt prospect Otto Somppi left the game in the 2nd period with an apparent upper body injury after a taking a Drakkar hit and will be evaluated on Saturday. Blue Jackets free agent signee and Moosehead captain Maxime Fortier led Halifax with two goals and Alexis Gravel, one of the top 2018 draft eligible goalies, made 36 saves as the Mooseheads gutted out a win in a penalty-filled affair. Game #2 is Saturday night right back at the Scotiabank Centre in Halifax.
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Ontario Hockey League

#8 Saginaw Spirit 2 @ #1 Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 5
Western Conference Quarterfinals
Greyhounds lead series 1-0

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 0-2-2, +2, 0 PIM, 4 SOG, *Third Star*
Season Totals: 58 GP, 42-43-85, +53, 30 PIM
Playoff Totals: 1 GP, 0-2-2, +2, 0 PIM
’16-’17 Season: 66 GP, 35-29-64, +18, 46 PIM

W Taylor Raddysh, SSM: 2-0-2, +2, 0 PIM, 6 SOG, 5/9 FO, *First Star*
Season Totals (SSM): 28 GP, 18-21-39, +14, 14 PIM
Season Totals (ER): 30 GP, 15-29-44, +10, 16 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 33-50-83, +24, 30 PIM
Playoff Totals: 1 GP, 2-0-2, +2, 0 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals: 58 GP, 42-67-109, +67, 37 PIM

The kickoff of the 2018 OHL playoffs continued Friday with Game #1 of the Western Conference quarterfinals series between #8 seed Saginaw Spirit against #1 seed and winner of the OHL best regular season record of 55-7-3-3 Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds

Bolt prospect Taylor Raddysh broke open a 1-1 game in the 2nd period with a pair of back-to-back late in the period to give the Soo a 3-1 lead heading to 2nd intermission. Fellow Bolt prospect Boris Katchouk assisted on both of Raddysh’s goals, with Raddysh earning First Star honors and Katchouk named as the Third Star. Right-hand blueliner Mac Hollowell (2018 draft eligible) scored once for the Soo and contributed a pair of assists. Game #2 is scheduled for Sunday afternoon back at the Essar Centre.

Western Hockey League

#8 Prince Albert Raiders 5 @ #1 Moose Jaw Warriors 3
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals
Raiders lead series 1-0

D Oleg Sosunov, MJ: 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 71 GP, 7-19-26, +35, 62 PIM
Playoff Totals: 1 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (MHL-Russia): 32 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 79 PIM

The kickoff of the 2018 WHL playoffs continued Friday with Game #1 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals series between #8 seed Prince Albert Raiders against #1 seed and Eastern Conference-best with a 52-15-2-3 record Moose Jaw Warriors.

Much like Thursday night when the upstart Tri-City Americans rolled into Kelowna and served up some notice, likewise, the Raiders pulled into Mosaic Place serving up the same to the Warriors in the form of a 5-3 win. Jordy Stallard (WPG, 2016 5th round pick) scored twice for Prince Albert in the 1st and Cole Fonstad (2018 draft eligible) scored twice in the 2nd to put the game out of reach for Moose Jaw. These two teams square off for Game #2 Saturday night back at Mosaic Place.

Juniors Game Night: 3-23-18

United States Hockey League

** Note: Cole Guttman (Dubuque) was placed on injured reserved on December 22nd following the completion of the World Junior A Challenge tournament.

Omaha Lancers 2 @ Fargo Force 8

D Nick Perbix , OMA: 0-0-0, E, 16 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 48 GP, 4-19-23, +9, 32 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 10-30-40, 6 PIM
Committed to: St. Cloud State University

What’s worse than losing 7-1 in Fargo? How about losing 8-2 the very next night. Things turned ugly after the Lancers lost back-to-back games by a combined score of 15-3, as the two teams racked up a combined 182 minutes of penalties in this second match. Eight of the game’s ten goals were scored on the power play, including both of Omaha’s and six of Fargo’s eight. Bolt prospect Nick Perbix doubled his season penalty minutes totals with three minors and a game misconduct. Burn the tape of this trip to Fargo.

Sioux City Musketeers 2 @ Des Moines Buccaneers 3 (SO)

F Sammy Walker, SC: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 5 SOG
Season Totals (USHL): 7 GP, 0-3-3, -3, 4 PIM
’16-’17 Totals (USHL): 4 GP, 0-0-0, -3, 6 PIM
Season Totals (HS): 31 GP, 35-44-79, 16 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 22-24-46, 6 PIM
Committed to: University of Minnesota

Walker setup Cole Koepke (Minnesota-Duluth commit) for a 1st period goal to knot the score at 1-1. For those of you not scoring at home, that’s three assists in Walker’s first three games back with the Musketeers. That line of Walker, Koepke and Dylan Mills (Niagara commit) have scored in each of those three games. Sioux City Head Coach Luke Strand threw the trio out as the first three shooters in the shootout, but the Musketeers fell short 3-2 in a six-frame shootout.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 3-22-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

#16 Val-d’Or Foreurs 2 @ #1 Blainville-Boisbriand Armada 3 (OT)
Round of 16
Armada leads series 1-0

C Alex Barré-Boulet , BLB: 1-1-2, +3, 2 PIM, 6 SOG, 10/13 FO, *Third Star*
Season Totals: 65 GP, 53-66-116, +28, 67 PIM
Playoff Totals: 1 GP, 1-1-2, +3, 2 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 65 GP, 29-52-81, +10, 42 PIM

The 2018 QMJHL playoffs kicked off Thursday night with Game #1 of the series between #16 seed Val-d’Or Foreurs against #1 seed Blanville-Boisbriand Armada. The Armada set a franchise record 50-win season, going 50-11-4-3 and winning their first ever Jean-Rougeau Trophy as the QMJHL best regular season team.

Bolt prospect Alex Barre-Boulet and linemate Alexandre Alain (undrafted) shared a couple of 1st period short-handed goals, each scoring one and each getting the lone assist on the other, to give the Armada an early 2-0 lead. But the Foreurs battled back after a scoreless 2nd period, lighting the lamp twice in the 3rd to send the game to the extra session, where Alain notched the game-winner, his second of the game and the playoffs. Val-d’Or netminder Mathieu Marquis (undrafted) stopped 43 of 46 Armada shots but came up one save short. Game #2 is Friday night right back at Centre d'excellence Sports Rousseau.

Western Hockey League

#7 Tri-City Americans 5 @ #3 Kelowna Rockets 0
Western Conference Quarterfinals
Americans lead series 1-0

D Cal Foote, KEL: 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 60 GP, 19-51-70, +31, 46 PIM
Playoffs Totals: 1 GP, 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM
‘15-‘16 Totals: 71 GP, 6-51-57, +39, 41 PIM

The 2018 WHL playoffs also kicked off Thursday with Game #1 of the Western Conference quarterfinals series between #7 seed Tri-City Americans against #3 seed and B.C. Division champs Kelowna Rockets.

Tri-City rolled into Prospera Place in Kelowna, serving notice to the Rockets with a 5-0 shutout behind 39 saves by Americans goalie Patrick Dea (undrafted), and two goals each from Morgan Geekie (CAR, 2017 3rd round pick) and 2017 #9 overall Red Wings pick Michael Rasmussen. The two teams get a night off with Game 2 on Saturday in Kelowna.

Juniors Game Night: 3-22-18

United States Hockey League

** Note: Cole Guttman (Dubuque) was placed on injured reserved on December 22nd following the completion of the World Junior A Challenge tournament.

Omaha Lancers 1 @ Fargo Force 7

D Nick Perbix , OMA: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 47 GP, 4-19-23, +9, 16 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 10-30-40, 6 PIM
Committed to: St. Cloud State University

A.J. Drobot (Maine commit) led the charge for the Force with a pair of goals and Fargo goalie Strauss Mann (Michigan commit) made 26 saves as the Force smoked the Lancers.

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