Ice defenceman Nathyn Mortlock

Ice defenceman Nathyn Mortlock

Ice defenceman suspended two games for check from behind

Ice defenceman Nathyn Mortlock suspended two games by WHL following check from behind against Seattle

Kootenay Ice defenceman/forward Nathyn Mortlock (1996) has been suspended for two games after receiving a checking from behind major penalty and game misconduct against the Seattle Thunderbirds on Sept. 11 in Kennewick, Wash.

The supplementary discipline was handed down by the Western Hockey League Monday.

“Nobody really saw [the hit] that clearly,” said Luke Pierce, Ice head coach, Sunday after returning from Kennewick. “We all kind of looked up and saw the kid go into the wall.

“Luckily, he was all right. He came back and played the next shift on the power play.

“I don’t think there was anything malicious or intentful on Nathyn’s part. It was just one of those plays below the goal line where he caught the kid on the wrong side of the shoulder and he went into the wall funny. I think it looked a lot worse than it was, but those are the consequences of those plays.”

Mortlock sat out Saturday’s 3-2 overtime loss to the Prince George Cougars and will miss Thursday’s pre-season tilt with the Lethbridge Hurricanes to complete his suspension.

The 19-year-old native of Medicine Hat, Alta., came to the Kootenay Ice on a tryout this fall, after being released by the Regina Pats following the 2015 WHL Bantam Draft.

The Ice wrap up the pre-season with a pair of games in Crowsnest Pass — Thursday against the Hurricanes at 7 p.m. and Saturday against the Calgary Hitmen at 7 p.m.