Tokarski Stops 41 in Shutout Win; Fadden Injured

N.A. Juniors Playoff Game Night: 4/8

Tokarski slams the door on Vancouver ... Fadden scores, but leaves hurt ... Cunti scores as Rimouski moves closer to closing out Barberio and Moncton ... Cape Breton loses again on home ice ... CHL playoff updates.

QMJHL Playoffs – Conference Semi-Finals

Moncton Wildcats 2 @ Rimouski Oceanic 4
Rimouski leads Best of 7 series 3-1
W/C Luca Cunti, RIM: 1-0-1, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Playoff totals: 8 GP, 3-3-6, +3, 10 PIM
Season totals: 57 GP, 20-25-45, +10, 32 PIM
D Mark Barberio, MCT: 0-0-0, -1, 2 PIM, 0 SOG
Playoff totals: 9 GP, 0-4-4, +5, 6 PIM
Season totals: 66 GP, 15-30-45, +9, 42 PIM

Rimouski has used their home ice to their advantage, winning both games in Quebec and putting the higher-ranked Wildcats on the brink of elimination. Cunti scored his first goal of the series – a power play marker. Rimouski outshot Moncton 41-26. Game 5 is Friday in New Brunswick.

Quebec Remparts 5 @ Cape Breton Screaming Eagles 2
Best of 7 series tied 2-2
D Michael Ward, CB: 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Playoff totals: 8 GP, 1-4-5, +5, 12 PIM
Season totals: 65 GP, 7-27-34, +9, 105 PIM

Cape Breton, who came home to Sydney after sweeping the higher-ranked Remparts on the road in games 1 and 2, blew both games at home and has given back home ice advantage. Game 5 is in Quebec City Friday night.

WHL Playoffs – Conference Semi-Finals

Tri-City Americans 3 @ Kelowna Rockets 4 (OT)
Best of 7 series tied 2-2
C Mitch Fadden, TC: 1-0-1, E, 0 PIM
Playoff totals: 9 GP, 3-12-15, +6, 4 PIM
Season totals: 63 GP, 37-39-76, +24, 49 PIM

Kelowna held on home ice, getting an overtime power play goal by Jamie Benn (Dallas) for the win. Benn also had 3 assists in the game. Kelowna had tied the game on the power play mid-way through the third period. TC’s coach, Don Nachbaur, was more than displeased Riley McIntosh was given a hooking minor that led to the OT winner. Fadden extended his point streak to 8 games with a second period goal, but left the game in the third period due to injury. The Ams held 2-1 and 3-2 leads in the game. Chet Pickard stopped 34 of 38 shots, including a third period penalty shot by Flames first rounder Mikael Backlund. Tyler Myers (Buffalo), the outstanding 6-6 “stay-at-home” defenseman for Kelowna, continues to have a breakout year offensively. He jumped from 19 to 42 points this season (plus-31 rating), and now has 11 points in 8 playoff games, including 5 in the last 2 games when the Rockets have needed him most down 0-2 in the series. It was a hit by Myers that knocked Fadden out of the game, and Fadden was seen with his left arm in a sling after the contest. TC got captain Taylor Procyshen back for the game, but was still without Fadden’s linemate, Jason Reese. Game 5 is Friday in Kennewick, WA.

Vancouver Giants 0 @ Spokane Chiefs 1
Best of 7 series tied 2-2
G Dustin Tokarski, SPO: Win, 41 saves on 41 shots, shutout, *First Star*
Playoff totals: 9 GP, 6-3-0, 2.13 GAA, .931 sv%, 1 shutout, 1 assist
Season totals: 54 GP, 34-18-0-2, 1.97 GAA, .937 sv%, 7 shutouts
C James Wright, VAN: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM
Playoff totals: 8 GP, 1-4-5, +3, 4 PIM
Season totals: 71 GP, 21-26-47, +26, 54 PIM

Tokarski lived up to his reputation as a big game goaltender, stopping 41 shots to lead Spokane to a win and help the Chiefs tie the series. Had James Wright and Vancouver won, the West’s top seed would be going home for Game 5 with a seemingly insurmountable 3-1 lead. After a lackluster performance in Game 3, the Giants were expected to come with their A game, and they did just that, outshooting Spokane 41-18. The Chiefs got a first period power play goal by Tyler Johnson (undrafted), and Tokarski slammed the door shut. Spokane played with 5 defensemen due to injuries. Evander Kane, a consideration for the 3 spot in this summer’s draft, has 7 points in 8 playoff games. He has 2 assists in the Spokane series – both coming in Game 2. Game 5 is Friday in Vancouver.

Around the CHL playoffs

In the Q… top-ranked Drummondville completed their sweep of Montreal and Shawinigan is up 3-1 over higher-ranked Gatineau.

In the OHL... Belleville is up 3-1 over Niagara, Brampton and Mississauga are tied 2-2 (Duchene 8 GP, 6-5-11 for Brampton), Windsor and Plymouth are tied 2-2 (Ellis 8 GP, 6-8-14 for Windsor), and London swept Saginaw (Tavares 9 GP, 6-8-14 and Kadri 9 GP, 8-7-15 for London).

Elsewhere in the WHL... No.1 Calgary swept Lethbridge, and Brandon is on the verge of sweeping Medicine Hat, up 3-0 (Schenn 7 GP, 6-7-13 for Brandon).

*Some WHL information for this report taken from “Taking Note,” by Gregg Drinnan of the Kamloops Daily News.