Tag Archives: Blaine Showcase

NAHL Recap: Knights Fall 4-3 in Overtime to Open Showcase

The Knights touched down in Minnesota to meet the Topeka Pilots for game one of the NAHL’s annual Blaine Showcase. The contest kicked off with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton controlling the early tempo, outshooting Topeka 10-5 in the first 20 minutes of play. It would be the Pilots however that would strike first.

13 minutes into play, Zeke Zeier broke up a Knights pass in his own zone, speeding up the ice and onto the attack. In the left corner of the Knights zone, Zeier turned the puck back up ice to teammate Dallas Tulik. In similar fashion to a goal scored against the Knights last week, Tulik juggled a puck in his skates and onto his stick, avoiding Knights pressure all the while. Once cleanly in space, he fired a shot past Knights starter Zach Stejskal to build a 1-0 lead.

Four minutes later, number four for the Knights notched goal number one of his junior career. Off a faceoff, Gabe Temple and Sacha Guillemain went to work on the side boards. Guillemain found the puck off of Temple’s poke check, and fired it across the ice to the wide open Davis Pennington. Pennington roofed the puck under the bar, popping Sam Metcalf’s bottle up into the air to knot the game at one.

In the second period, the Knights would capitalize on a carry over penalty to grab their first lead of the game. Behind the net, Jake Fuss would win the puck off the wall to a fast-moving Sacha Guillemain. The latter popped out on the left post, and flipped the puck across the slot to a crashing Gabe Temple. Temple shoveled the puck by Metcalf for his first goal of the season and the Knights 2-1 lead.

Through an evenly played middle period, Metcalf and Stejskal hunkered down to keep the score close. The third period would change the narrative.

The Pilots would surge ahead in the middle of the frame. At 9:09, Tulik would strike for his second goal of the afternoon set up by Quinn Green. A few minutes later, Zeke Teier would notch his second point of the day and first tally of the season when he was set up by Joel Brandinger and goalie Sam Metcalf.

The Knights wouldn’t trail for long. On another power play, Luke Robinson found Sacha Guillemain, who sent a pass to Temple for the game-tying goal. Both forwards would finish with three points on the day.

The score would remained locked into three-on-three overtime. After a brief exchange that ate the first few minutes, Topeka would find the game-winner. Brenden found Brendan, as Rons fed Schultz for the game-winning goal past Stejskal.

The Knights earned their first point but will look for their first victory tomorrow when they take on the Brookings Blizzard at 1:30 PM central. Tune in on www.hockeytv.com and follow along on Knights social media!

Knights Finish Showcase with Shootout Thriller

Kidney, Morrissey, Goaltending the way as the Knights leave Minnesota with three more victories.

The Knights final showdown in Blaine saw an 9:30 am start against the Corpus Christi Ice Rays. For the Knights, the game was their sixth in nine days. Goalies Dave Tomeo and Chad Veltri exchanged saves in a scoreless opening period that saw both teams struggle to consistently attack from the middle of the ice.

The following period saw more of the same, until Matt Novo fired a puck past Tomeo (Moncovich, Osmundson) to put the Ice Rays on the board. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton was given a break when it appeared that Corpus Christi scored a third goal not long after Novo’s score, but the officials deemed that the net came its moorings prior to the puck crossing the goal line. In response, the Knights mounted shots but couldn’t solve Veltri until 16:55, when Thomas Farrell found a streaking Matt Kidney behind the defense, and the forward potted the breakaway equalizer.

The gridlock returned for the first 10 minutes of the third, but the Knights took their first two penalties of the game to aid the Ice Rays offensive presence. They were finally rewarded at 10:21, when on a power play, Angus Scott flipped a slick backhand shot to beat Tomeo and regain the lead.

Following the score, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton pushed their way back into the attacking zone but still found issue in finding the spaces around Veltri. With time winding down in the final minutes, tensions flared on a pile up in front of Tomeo. In the ensuing scrum, Tomeo removed his helmet and was assessed a game misconduct. The remaining penalties created 4-on-4 hockey for the rest of the third, but the Knights were forced to put Christian Stoever in off the bench with just over a minute left in regulation.

Stoever’s stay was brief as the Knights quickly pulled him in favor of the extra attacker. All appeared lost as a turnover near the Knights net looked all-but destined to result in a Corpus Christi empty-net tally. Instead, Matt Kidney made a last-second stick lift and pulled the puck back to his possession. His exit pass started a rush back to Corpus Christi’s end of the ice where Curtis Carlson rang a shot off the post. In the ensuing tangle for possession, Mike Morrissey planted the game-tying goal past Veltri with 46 seconds left on the clock.

Headed for overtime, the Knights were called for tripping with just two seconds left in the third, giving Corpus Christi the 4-on-3 for an extended period in the extra time. The Knights, led by Stoever’s excellent work in net, were able to kill the penalty and rob the Ice Rays of several grade-A chances. Once play returned to 3-on-3, Veltri stood tall to turn away a handful of quality Knights chances to force a shootout.

In the best-of-three shootout Stoever stopped the first two shots for the Knights, while Veltri fended off Olmstead. In the Knights second attempt, Matt Kidney ripped a shot top shelf to gain the lead. On Corpus Christi’s last chance, Stoever went all the way to the ice and stonewalled Matt Novo to lock down the win.

The Knights move to 5-1 on the year, finishing 3-1 in Blaine. They are now 1-0 in games settled by both overtime and shootout. Dave Tomeo was stellar in 58:51 before his removal. Stoever was a perfect 4-4 in relief and then 3-3 in the shootout. They are currently tied for first place in the NAHL East division with 10 points. The two goalies have combined for a  .932 save percentage through six games. They’re next game will come at home against the Philadelphia Rebels on October 6th at the Class of 1923 Arena at 7:10 pm.

Showcase Schedule Released

The Knights NAHL Showcase schedule, along with the rest of the league’s, has been released. In the annual NAHL Showcase, the Knights will face the following four teams over the four day event:

Game 1, Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016, WBS Knights at Minnesota Magicians, Start: 1:00 PM*, Rink 4

Game 2, Thursday, Sept. 22, 2016, Aberdeen Wings at WBS Knights, Start: 10:00 AM*, Rink 2

Game 3, Friday, Sept. 23, 2016, WBS Knights at Minot Minotauros, Start: 2:15 PM*, Rink 1

Game 4, Saturday, Sept. 24, 2016, Odessa Jackalopes at WBS Knights, Start: 9:00 AM*, Rink 2

*All times CST. Warm-ups will commence half an hour before each game’s scheduled puck-drop.

The NAHL Showcase is held every year in Blaine, Minnesota at the Schwan Super Rink. It represents an outstanding opportunity for all players involved to represent themselves in front of scouts from all levels of hockey. In their first season in the NAHL, the Knights used Blaine as a learning experience. Following their return home from Minnesota, the team made a flurry of moves to better their roster.

This year’s schedule pits the Knights against two Central Division teams along with one opponent from the Midwest and one from the South. Last season, the Minot Minotauros, the Minnesota Magicians and the Aberdeen Wings finished 2nd, 5th and 6th in the Central, respectively, with Minot being the lone playoff finisher of the bunch. The Magicians have realigned to the Midwest this year. Odessa, the team’s lone opponent from the Southern division, finished 4th and also made the postseason. Both teams exited after the first round.

All four Knights games as well as all 48 NAHL showcase will be broadcast on FastHockey.com.