Broncos fall in tight battle to Silvertips
The 2018 Rogers WHL Championship Series kick started on Friday night at the Innovation Credit Union i-Plex and it was the Everett Silvertips that escaped with a 2-1 nod over the Swift Current Broncos in a tight contest.
Game One began with both squads not giving an inch to one another in terms of quality scoring chances. Instead, it was physical and tight checking for the first 10 minutes in front of a sold out crowd at the Innovation Credit Union I-Plex.
Broncos forward Beck Malenstyn received a two minute penalty for kneeing and the Silvertips took advantage as forward Patrick Bajkov streaked to the net and buried his 14th of the postseason 25 seconds into the Tips’ man advantage.
The Broncos piled on shots in the dying moments of the opening frame but trailed the Silvertips 1-0 despite owning a 14-9 edge in shots.
Swift Current received a four-on-three power play chance when Silvertips’ Garrett Pilon got a two-minute minor tripping seconds after coincidental minors were handed out to both teams.
Florida Panthers prospect Aleksi Heponiemi and the Broncos power play unit created scoring chance after scoring chance and were finally awarded as the penalty expired. Broncos forward Matteo Gennaro released a low shot towards the Silvertips goal with Heponiemi redirecting it low by the left pad of Everett netminder Carter Hart to knot it 1-1.
Connor Dewar scored the go-ahead goal 1:49 into the third period when he tipped in his 10th of the postseason by Broncos goaltender Stuart Skinner to place the home team down 2-1.
Swift Current called a timeout with 1:57 left in regulation to get refueled for the final stretch. The club pulled Skinner with two minutes left to go and produced a couple scoring chances with the extra attacker but couldn’t solve Tips netminder Carter Hart in a 2-1 defeat.
Shots on goal were 35-25 in favour of Swift Current. Everett went 1/2 on the power play while Swift Current was scoreless on their lone opportunity.
Game Two is right back on home ice on Saturday, May 5th. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00pm.