Vees Remain Undefeated at WCC, Blank Hosts on Day 2

Post Game_GM 2



  • Two down, two to go. The Vees are halfway through their Western Canada Cup schedule and so far, so good. The Vees are 2-0 after blanking the host Fort McMurray Oil Barons 6-0 Sunday night at the Casman Centre. It was another quick start for the Vees, as they opened the scoring 1:51 in and were up 3-0 inside the first six-minutes. Tyson Jost and Connor Chartier each had a pair of goals and Dante Fabbro and Mitch Newsome added singles.
  • After two games, the Vees have not led a game for only 2:10. They scored 19-seconds into the game on Saturday and 1:51 into the contest on Sunday. Talk about quick strike offense. The Jost line got it going on Sunday, as Pat Newell made a nice play behind the net (he’s back there so much, he should start paying rent), as he fired the puck out front to Tyson Jost for the one-timer from in close. A bit of good fortune for the Vees, as the defenseman Mark Drohan blew a tire trying to get away from the Vees’ fore-check pressure.
  • Good to see two guys score that had yet to register a point in the tournament. Dante Fabbro, who had a very good game on Saturday, got his first point of the WCC in the first, when he finished off a 4-on-2 rush in the MOB end. The hosts sent the house in the Vees end but their rush was broken up and the Vees counter-attacked with numbers. Riley Alferd made a nice drop pass and Fabbro walked in between the circles and fired just above Brett Lewchuk’s blocker. Then late in the second, Mitch Newsome buried his first of the WCC, on a nice play coming off the wall. Paddy Sexton kept the puck in at the blue-line and jammed it down to “Joey” on the half-boards. Newsome wheeled into the slot and ripped a wrist’er over Lewchuk’s glove. After Sunday’s win, now only two Vees don’t have at least a single point in this tournament; they’re spreading it around.
  • I wrote about it after game one, chatted to Head Coach Fred Harbinson prior to game two and I’ll write about it again here, the Vees transition game has been a big key. Two of their three first period goals came off the rush and on counter-attacks. I just talked about Fabbro’s goal and Jost’s second was off the rush with Demico Hannoun. Heckuva pass by Hannoun to throw a saucer pass circle to circle and right in Jost’s wheelhouse for the one-timer. But the Vees ability to quickly turn from defense to offense has given their opposition fits.
  • Maybe lost in the shuffle was Hunter Miska’s performance in game two. By his own admission, he didn’t like his rebound control in the Vees’ first game of the WCC but he sure “turned it around,” on Sunday night. Miska was dialed in, absorbing the puck or directing rebounds into non-threatening areas. His best stop was that 10-bell save on the Oil Barons’ Adam Durkee early in the second period. Jetland Houcher stole the puck in the corner and fired out front to Durkee who was all alone. He appeared to have the top of the net to shoot at but Miska dove across and reached up with his glove and knocked down the shot. It was a thing of beauty. He also fought through the traffic and was really good about clearing the front of his net when the puck was loose. Miska lived up to his word, as he told me on the bus ride over that he was going to be fired up. He’s now 2-0, with a stingy 1.50 goals-against average and a sparkling .941 save-percentage.
  • The Vees continue to spread around the scoring, as now every line has at least one goal through two games, afterNewsome’s second period tally. Scoring by line through two games:
    • 1st Line: 6-5-11
    • 2nd Line: 5-6-11
    • 3rd Line: 3-2-5
    • 4th Line: 1-2-3
  • Outside of collecting three points, that “fourth line” of Newsome, Lewis Zerter-Gossage and Cam Amantea have played quite well. They’re eating up zone time, extending shifts in the other teams end and putting in quality minutes. Amantea had a partial breakaway that was stopped by Brett Lewchuk and he and Newsome also had a two-on-one rush in the second. LZG has assists in back-to-back games and you can see him getting more confident shift by shift. You want to play a full bench in a short tournament where you’re playing four games in five nights and players are allowing the Vees coaches to do just that.
  • So why didn’t Oil Barons 20-year-old Zach Fortin play last night? The finalist for the AJHL Top Goaltender Award was a surprise scratch and didn’t even dress. Post-game, when asked in a media scrum, Oil Barons Head Coach Curtis Hunt said “We like are goaltending, so we decided to give him a rest.”  Interesting, because they were just off for 47 days, as their last game was March 9th. Draw your own conclusions.
  • Tyson Jost is loving Fort McMurray. Five goals and six points in two games and sits atop of the table in scoring at the WCC. He and his line are on fire but most importantly they’re not cutting corners to get points. Pretty incredible to think Jost just turned 17 just a few weeks ago; plays well beyond his years.

About CBeauchemin

Director of Broadcasting & Communication for the Penticton Vees
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One Response to Vees Remain Undefeated at WCC, Blank Hosts on Day 2

  1. david falls says:

    keep up the good work

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