Story Coming In:
The Terriers are playing for pride and positions for next season. Having officially been eliminated from playoff contention, Yorkton will miss the postseason for the first time since the 2017/18 season. Now the Terriers continue their four game road trip with a swing into west-central Saskatchewan, starting against the top ranked Battlefords North Stars. On paper, it’s a mismatch, with both teams’ position in the standings and the North Stars going 5-0 against Yorkton. However, each game the Terriers have kept pace with the North Stars through at least 40 minutes, if not the entire game. The top line of Clay Sleeva, Cade Kennedy and Dylan Ruptash has been dangerous lately for Yorkton, while the power-play has been more productive as of late having produced in the last two games. The Terriers will need to overcome the absence of Logan Cyca and Dalton Mayes, both suspended, but with the return of JD Hall and the call up of Cutter Knight, Yorkton looks to continue on with business as usual.
View From Battlefords:
The North Stars are coming off a highly competitive doubleheader against the Flin Flon Bombers. In both games at the Whitney Forum, the North Stars were badly outshot. The first game they were also run out of the building, losing 6-0 and piling up 113 penalty minutes. The North Stars rebounded on Saturday with a 4-2 win, but should be concerned with how Flin Flon carried the play, possibly painting a picture for opposing teams to pick apart Battlefords. Josh Kotai continued building his case for Goalie of the Year, being the best player both nights for Battlefords, while Jackson Allan and Steven Kesslering led the way offensively for the North Stars. Battlefords will also see the return of Colby Bear, who served a one game suspension, and he will solidify the centre of the lineup for Battlefords with his big, physical presence.
For the second time this season, Cutter Knight gets the call from the Yorkton Terriers. The 2022 first round selection plays his AAA hockey with the Estevan Bears in what has been a difficult season for the team, but a solid year for Knight. The 2006-born Swift Current product has earned a reputation as a rugged, shutdown defender with an excellent first pass. Head Coach Mat Hehr is excited about the young defender, predicting that he could battle for a roster spot next season, in a year where Yorkton could bring back all six defencemen. Should Knight provide a solid display this week in a second audition with the big club, then Terrier fans should get excited for the future of the hockey club.
Stats Leaders For Yorkton:
Goals: Ruptash (19)
Assists: Hall & Perkins (16)
Points: Ruptash (33)
PIM: Mayes (181)
Goalie: Allen 13-22-1, 3.84, 0.897% 1SO 1G