Game 3 goes tonight in Spruce Grove as the Saints welcome in the Wenatchee Wild who bring with them a 2-0 series lead.
As the series switches to Alberta, here are some key facts to be aware of.
For the Wild:
- Homesick? The wild struggled away from home during their playoff run, having gone 5W – 4L compared to a 13W – 0L at home.
- Riding the hot hand: Austin Parks stellar performance on the weekend was a big help for the Wild after the Saints pushed back in game two trying to tie the series. In the two games he’s made 56 saves on 58 shots posting a 0.966 SV% with a 0.952 GAA and one shutout.
- Reading between the lines: Both games have been close contests despite winning game two 3-0, The Wild were only able to get one past Nolan Kent, with the next two being EN.
- Killer instinct: Tonight’s Game 3 is a crucial game in the series. The wild could either take a commanding 3-0 lead. Or it could be game on in Spruce Grove with games 3-7 all being played in Alberta.
For the Saints
- Without their leading scorer: Spruce Groves Chris Van Os-Shaw, who put up 51G – 46A in the regular season is yet to play in the Doyle Cup due to a broken finger suffered in the AJHL final.
- Goaltending: Nolan Kent spent most of the regular season in the stands due to an injury but hasn’t disappointed in the playoffs posting a 1.58 SV% in 13 games in the AJHL playoffs. Despite losing both games in Wenatchee, he still has an impressive 1.92 GAA and a 0.941 SV%. Maybe he can steal one tonight for the Saints.
- Must win territory? The Saints would not want to find themselves down 3-0 in the series. That being said, they control home ice for the remaining length of the Doyle Cup. They have a very respectable home record this year at 25-5 followed up with a 5-1 playoff home record. It’s not time to panic yet if you’re the Saints.
Expect thing to heat up tonight in Spruce Grove. The Game goes at 6pm PST and you can catch it on HockeyTV.