Story Coming In:
Despite playing with a short roster, the Yorkton Terriers suffocated the Melville Millionaires in a 3-0 victory at the Westland Insurance Arena. Now with points in three straight games, the Terriers sit seven points clear of Notre Dame for a playoff spot. It’ll be another day of playing shorthanded, as the Terriers will only be able to dress 10 forwards and 6 defenseman when they visit the Nipawin Hawks. It’s the first time since December these two teams have played, with Nipawin taking the last meeting 5-4 in overtime. Revenge will be on the minds of Yorkton as they look to avenge that loss, while ending any hope of Nipawin qualifying for the postseason.
View From Nipawin:
Nipawin’s playoff chances are all but dead. With 11 games left and sitting 13 points back, mathematically they could still qualify, but the Hawks would need a miracle to make it to the postseason. Their play as of late hasn’t shown that they’ll turn things around soon either. With only two wins in their last 16 games, this is not the Nipawin Hawks of old, and already they will be looking towards next season. Chase Hamm has been a lone bright spot for Nipawin this year. Despite a record of 11-16-0-3, the Saskatoon product has posted a 2.96 goals against average and 4 shutouts on the year. Unfortunately for him, the Hawks have not given him any goal support, as Rylan Lefebvre leads the team in points with 21.
With all the injuries to the forwards, opportunities have opened up for role players to step up and make a difference on the Terriers roster. One player who has seen a bit of a resurgence as of late is Karsten Kruska. After posting points in six of his first nine games of the season, Kruska cooled off through November and December, finding himself in and out of the lineup. Now, the 19-year-old from Edmonton has points in four straight games, including a game winning goal on Saturday against Melville. Playing on a line with Steven Norum and Maddux Nollski, Kruska has used his aggressive play style to create chances for his line, and he’s really starting to form a connection with Norum. Kruska has also found himself on the penalty kill, where his tenacity has helped build the third best PK unit in the SJHL.
Tale of the Tape
Yorkton Terriers (22-20-1-5 – 50 points) Nipawin Hawks (14-27-0-6 – 34 points)
2nd Viterra Division/ T-6th SJHL 4th Sherwood Division/ 11th SJHL
Powerplay: 20/175 – 11.4% (T-10th SJHL) Powerplay: 24/202 – 11.9% (9th SJHL)
Penalty Kill: 187/215 – 87.0% (3rd SJHL) Penalty Kill: 172/219 – 78.5% (9th SJHL)
Last Ten: 5-4-0-1 Streak: 2-0-0-1 Last Ten: 1-8-0-1 Streak: 0-4-0-0
Stats Leaders For Yorkton:
Goals: Gervais (16)
Assists: Jasper & Norum (24)
Points: Norum (35)
PIM: Gervais (82)
Goalie: DePape 17-13-0-5, 2.27, 0.918%, 4 SO