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October 27, 2017 6:15 pm

Cougars vs. Portland Tonight

Wednesday, March 29, 2017 @ 10:47 AM

By the end of tonight one team will have the upper hand on the other in this best-of-seven series. Credit the Prince George Cougars who rallied after a tough Game 1 with a decisive 5-1 victory in Game 2. But also hats off to the Winterhawks who can’t be unsatisfied with a split. Tonight in Portland the Cougars will look to keep their positive momentum going when they take the ice with the Winterhawks at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum.



Series Record: 1-1

Goals For/Goals Against: 5 GF/7 GA

Power Play: 3/9 (33%)

Penalty Kill: 5/7 (71.4%)

Leading Scorers: Cody Glass (2GP – 1G – 1A – 2PTS), Keegan Iverson (2GP – 1G – 1A – 2PTS), Caleb Jones (2GP – 0G – 2A – 2PTS)


Cody Glass: The Winnipeg, MB broke up Ty Edmonds’ shutout bid late in the third period on Sunday and now has a point in each game of the series. Tonight at home Glass and his linemates Keegan Iverson and Skyler McKenzie will be poised for a big game and with the last change as the home team, Mike Johnston will be able to control their matchup accordingly.

Keegan Iverson: The Winterhawks captain has a goal and an assist so far in the series and he’s also done a great job at getting under the Cougars skin. His size and his experience are two great assets and look for him to make his presence felt at both ends of the ice tonight.


Henri Jokiharu: The draft eligible Fin hasn’t recorded a point yet in the series but it hasn’t been for a lack of opportunities or ice-time. He’s a terrific skater and is very poised, especially in the offensive zone. The Winterhawks defencemen are never afraid to rush the puck or join an odd-man rush, and sooner or later Jokiharu is going to make his presence felt in the series offensively.


Cole Kehler: In Game 1 Cole Kehler was the best Winterhawk. In Game 2 he didn’t make it past the one minute mark of the third period. The Winterhawks though will surely go back to their veteran for Game 3 and rightfully so. He’s had a great season and has already shown that he can be trusted to play well in this type of pressure-packed situation. For the series he’s 1-1 with an .857 save percentage and a 4.16 goals-against-average.


The Crowd: The Portland faithful are some of the loudest and the proudest in the business and it will certainly be a hostile environment tonight for Richard Matvichuk’s crew. A big key will be for the Cougars to weather the early storm. In order to do that they’ll need strong goaltending and they’ll need to keep the crowd out of the equation as much as possible.



Series Record: 1-1

Goals For/Goals Against: 7 GF/5 GA

Power Play: 2/7 (28.55)

Penalty Kill: 6/9 (66.6%)

Leading Scorers: Aaron Boyd (2GP – 2G – 0A – 2PTS), Radovan Bondra (2GP – 1G – 1A – 2PTS), Brendan Guhle (2GP – 0G – 2A – 2PTS)


Aaron Boyd: The 19-year-old from Winnipeg, MB sure made his presence felt in a big way in Game 2 when he potted two goals in the second period. Boyd has thrived all season alongside Josh Curtis, and the addition of Tanner Wishnowski to that line has paid off in a big way. The offensive outburst is a nice bonus for Boyd who has been so responsible defensively all season, and perhaps tonight can yeild more of the same.

Radovan Bondra: The Slovak forward has a goal and an assist so far in the series and came up with a timely power play goal in the third period Sunday that ultimately chased Cole Kehler from the Portland net. Bondra’s size is a big factor and he and his linemates Jansen Harkins and Colby McAuley are sure to get plenty of opportunities offensively tonight in Game 3.


Shane Collins: The 19-year-old from Rosetown, SK scored 22 seconds into the third period to give the Cougars a four goal lead in Game 2. Collins, like Aaron Boyd above has been very reliable all season long on the defensive side of the puck and it’s great to see him rewarded offensively. Tonight Collins will be tasked with logging some big minutes, and no doubt he’ll be up for the task.


Ty Edmonds: Tonight in Portland, Ty Edmonds will look to build off of a sensational effort in Game 2. When his team sputtered early, Edmonds was there, and looked as though he was gaining more and more confidence with each passing minute of the game. Winning on the road is a different animal though and Ty, like everyone else will need to shrug off some jitters in the opening minutes. If the Cougars get similar goaltending from Ty Edmonds tonight they are going to give themselves an excellent opportunity to win.


Compete: The biggest difference between Games 1 and 2 for the Cougars was their yearning and desire to compete and battle. Game 2 clearly showed that if the Cougars play to their strengths and use their depth and balance to their advantage, they are a very difficult team to beat. Tonight will be another tough test, but one the Cougars will surely be up for.


I watched Kamloops beat up on Kelowna on ShawTV last night. I was hoping to see our boys tonight but it looks like Shaw will show Kamloops/Kelowna again.

Oh well, here’s hoping Kamloops wins again so that their series hopefully goes for the full 7 games! I want to see the winner of that series tired, beat up and worn out when we advance to Round 2 of the Playoffs!

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