Steenbergen hits 30 goals, Broncos narrow by Tigers
The Swift Current Broncos kick started a three-in-three weekend set on Friday evening with a visit to the Canalta Centre to take on the Central Division leading Medicine Hat Tigers. The Broncos did just enough to get out of Medicine Hat with a 4-3 victory to improve to 14-4-1-0 on the season.
Tyler Steenbergen beat Tigers goaltender Michael Bullion on a Broncos power play, firing a good low shot from the slot to make it 1-0 Swift Current.
Max Gerlach knotted the game 1-1 as he completed a backhand wraparound by a sprawling Logan Flodell at the 15:39 mark.
The final 30 seconds of the opening frame displayed crazy end-to-end action. Flodell stopped Tigers forward Logan Preziuso point blank when he was all alone stationed in the slot and then Steenbergen picked up the rebound and went for a skate, eventually scoring his WHL leading 30th goal of the season.
Eight seconds later, 20-year-old forward Conner Chaulk capped off an eventful stretch of hockey, scoring his fourth marker after Calgary Flames prospect Glenn Gawdin fed him a perfect pass on the rush.
Mark Rassell clawed the Tigers back within one after displaying terrific patience in the slot before shooting a perfect shot by Flodell. The goal was assisted by Joel Cravin and Hayden Ostir and arrived at the 5:11 mark in period number two.
Swift Current took three consecutive minor penalties in the second period but Flodell kept the Broncos afloat, making key saves to help nurse the one-goal cushion heading to the final frame.
The Broncos took advantage of an early power play in the third as Colby Sissons completed a tape-to-tape pass to Aleksi Heponiemi, springing the Finnish Import on a breakaway opportunity. Heponiemi took care of business by beating Bullion five-hole and doubling the Broncos lead to 4-2.
Medicine Hat refused to go away as Gary Haden scored less than a minute later to once again close the gap to one.
The Broncos played defensively the rest of the way and made it to the final buzzer to narrowly get by 4-3.
Shots on goal were 42-16 in favour of Medicine Hat. Special teams play was a bright note for Swift Current as their top ranked power play executed twice on four tries while holding the Tigers scoreless on five power play chances.
The Broncos head back home to welcome the Calgary Hitmen for a Saturday night tilt. Puck drop is at 7:00pm CT.