Broncos eliminate Pats in dramatic fashion, advance to Round Two
The two best words in sports: Game Seven. That was what occurred between the visiting Regina Pats and the Swift Current Broncos on Monday night at the Innovation Credit Union i-Plex. 2018 is a new year as the Broncos got their revenge on the team that knocked them out in last year’s WHL playoffs by this time knocking off Regina in Game 7 by a score of 3-2 in front of a sold out crowd.
Regina opened the scoring at the 6:07 mark as forward Cameron Hebig kicked in the Pats first goal. The goal was legal as the play occurred outside the Broncos crease.
Swift Current did get that goal back as the Broncos top line combined for a terrific play on the rush. Aleksi Heponiemi entered the zone and fed the puck to Glenn Gawdin who zipped it over to Tyler Steenbergen, setting up the goal. The Sylvan Lake, AB product ripped a good low shot by Pats goaltender Ryan Kubic and it was 1-1.
The Broncos then took a lead 2-1 as Max Patterson netted his second goal of the postseason. 20-year-old forward Giorgio Estephan completed a tape-to-tape pass to Patterson and he made no mistake going upstairs.
Glenn Gawdin then made it 3-1 Broncos as he took a nice pass from Aleksi Heponiemi directly in front of the Pats crease and just snuck a one-timer through.
Regina refused to quit as Robbie Holmes collected his second goal of the postseason on a broken down play located in front of the Broncos net. Holmes gathered a loose puck and quickly snapped it to the back of the net, making this battle a one-goal game.
Washington Capitals prospect Beck Malenstyn took the lone penalty of the game for both squads, being assessed a two-minute minor for tripping. The Broncos penalty kill unit was strong and steady as they blocked shots and got a couple key saves from goaltender Stuart Skinner.
Regina pulled Kubic late for the extra attacker and the Broncos dug deep to not give the Pats any golden opportunities. With that, they dramatically made it to the final horn to win the best-of-seven series by a score of 3-2.
Shots on goal were 38-21 in favour of Regina. Swift Current had no power plays in this tilt while the Pats went scoreless on their lone man advantage.
The Swift Current Broncos will either face the Moose Jaw Warriors or the Prince Albert Raiders, pending whomever comes out of that series. The two East Division foes clash on Tuesday, April 3rd for Game 7 at Mosaic Place.