Ice drawing blood on the powerplay

Kootenay is third overall in the WHL with the man-advantage as they play host to the Warriors this weekend.

The Kootenay Ice took on up the dinner rush at East Side Mario's last week

The Kootenay Ice took on up the dinner rush at East Side Mario's last week

Kootenay’s offence has been clicking over the past three games, scoring five goals or more in each contest, and their effectiveness on the powerplay is one key part.

The Ice have the WHL’s third ranked powerplay in the league, going 24.7 percent, which ties them with the Wheat Kings, and only the Winterhawks are ahead at 24.9 per cent.

Their last three games—all wins—have featured goals with the man-advantage, as the team has scored four over that span.

Jaedon Descheneau has been the main beneficiary of offence from the powerplay, as he leads the team and is tied for sixth overall in the WHL at 13 goals with the man-advantage.

Though when confronted with that statistic, Descheneau brushes off the credit to his teammates.

“They’re getting me the puck and my job, when they get it to me, is to put it in if I get that opportunity or pass it off to someone else,” said Descheneau.

“They’re giving me opportunities to score and I haven’t really had to really do much to score, as in beat a guy or anything.”

After Descheneau, Reinhart is second in team scoring on the powerplay, with eight goals, while Luke Philp is third with six markers.

Descheneau said that both puck movement and player positioning are key to finding open spaces to make dangerous plays.

But even then, there’s always room for improvisation.

“We have a structure going into the powerplay that sometimes is not there and we have to move around and figure something out,” said Descheneau, “and the guys who are out there—the first unit and the second unit—are smart enough players to figure that out and we’re finding the holes and the seams to find players back door and so on and that’s why I think we’re doing so well.”

One interesting facet of the powerplay is centre Luke Philp, who sits on the blue line and uses his slap shot to often dangerous effects.

“I’ve worked on it a bit this year and always had a pretty decent one-timer, I’ve felt,” said Philp. “I’ve gotten it away this year and it’s gotten me a couple goals, so that’s nice.”

Though he is a fourth forward when out on the powerplay, he still has to be mindful of defensive responsibilities when working on the point.

“You’re the last guy back, so sometimes there will be four guys down low and you really want to go look to get that goal but you have to stay back and be the last guy back and that’s probably the only thing I’ve had to adjust to,” said Philp.

The Ice will be looking to keep their powerplay rolling when they face the visiting Moose Jaw Warriors on Saturday night.

The Warriors (13-27-3-5) are on a bit of a losing skid, dropping their last five in a row—two of which were decided in a shootout.

The Warriors were relatively quiet at the WHL trade deadline, but they did ship Chicago Blackhawks prospect Travis Brown to Victoria for Noah Gregor and draft picks.

The roster features Brayden Point, who replaced an injured player at the CHL Top Prospects game last week in Calgary. Point leads the Warriors with 22 goals and 27 assists for 49 points.

Goaltender Justin Paulic has gotten the lions share of the starts, with a 3.64 goals against average and a 0.889 save percentage.

Philp noted that Kootenay’s victories over the last three games have been only the second time the team has won three straight this season.

But the confidence is growing as the schedule leads into the playoff stretch.

“Streaks have been tough to come by this year,” said Philp, “and to get three in a row and feel like we’re playing good hockey—we can’t just be satisfied with three, we should always try for more, so we sense something building in there right now and we want to keep it going.”

NOTES: Philp has recorded a point in each of the last nine games, while Tim Bozon is riding an eight game point streak. Landon Peel will make his 100th career WHL appearance on Saturday. Defenceman Jagger Dirk needs two more assists to reach 100 in his WHL career, while Philp needs four points to reach the century mark as well.


Just Posted

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Over 5K jabbed at Interior Health mobile COVID-19 vaccine clinics

The clinics have made stops in more than 40 communities since launching last week

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interior Health COVID-19 cases falling slower than the rest of B.C.

More than a third of provincial cases announced Thursday came from the Interior

Students at Creston Valley Secondary School put together an art installation of a replica residential school room. (Photo by Kelsey Yates)
Creston students create art installation of residential school room

The replica was decorated with a small bed, school uniform, and notes written with pleas for help

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Second dose vaccinations accelerating throughout region: Interior Health

To date, more than 675,000 doses have been administered throughout the region

It happened this week in 1914

June 13 - 19: Compiled by Dave Humphrey from the archived newspapers… Continue reading

A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 charged, suspect at large in killings of B.C. brothers linked to gang activity: RCMP

Kamloops brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May on a remote Okanagan road

Albert Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney unveil an opening sign after speaking about the Open for Summer Plan and next steps in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta 1st province in Canada to lift all COVID-19 public health restrictions

70.2% of eligible citizens 12 and older in the province have received a dose of the vaccine

Fraser Health registered nurse Ramn Manan draws a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe at a walk-up vaccination clinic at Bear Creek Park, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Honour our fathers’ with COVID-19 vaccine protection, B.C. urges

109 new cases Friday, 75 per cent of 12 and up immunized

(Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Trutch Avenue in Chilliwack to be renamed to remove racist taint

New name to have Indigenous significance as Chilliwack takes new step toward reconciliation

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a joint news conference following the EU-Canada Summit, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday June 15, 2021. Trudeau says Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine deliveries enough to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians by end of July

Three in four eligible Canadians now have their first dose, nearly one in five fully vaccinated.

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases attributed to the highly contagious Delta variant grew in Canada this week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s public health agency reports spike in confirmed cases of Delta variant

More than 2,000 cases of the variant confirmed across all 10 provinces and in one territory

Bella Bella is on B.C.’s Central Coast, accessible only by air and ocean. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)
B.C. provides $22 million for Heiltsuk development on Central Coast

Elders care home project, tourism, lumber mill supported

Most Read