Blue 4, Grey 3
Blue goals: Tyler Sandhu, Mitch Skapski, Jake Durflinger 2.
Grey goals: Nick White, Micheal Zipp, Matt Fonteyne.
Blue goalies: Austin Lotz (4-4), Logan Linklater (8-7), Solomon Burk (8-6).
Grey goalies: Josh Stone (15-12), Nik Amundrud (8-7).
– Team Blue dominated this one for long stretches. Grey made a late push to get back within one, but for the most part this was Blue’s game.
– Almost all of the Blue’s damage was done by the line of Tyler Sandhu, Jake Durflinger and Carson Stadnyk. There were times they were on the ice and it looked like a Blue power play. The 16-year-old Durflinger looked right at home playing between the vets, and he had several good chances for his hat trick denied by Nik Amundrud. Blue also benefits from having four list-caliber defensemen who have been to camp before — Mirco Mueller, Noah Juulsen, Jordan Wharrie and Arsh Shergill. Shergill apparently isn’t on Everett’s list anymore, but he’s capable enough to still be there.
– Grey could have used more production from it’s older players. Manraj Hayer was particularly frustrated during this game, banging his stick in exasperation on multiple occasions.
Green 3, Red 2
Green goals: Stevie Bryant, Ivan Nikolishin, Lucas Skrumeda.
Red goals: Patrick Khodorenko, Josh Winquist.
Green goalies: Mario Petit (17-16), Quinton Reynolds (9-8).
Red goalies: Daniel Cotton (5-4), Carter Hart (4-4), Nathan Cvar (11-9).
– Similar to the first game, Red dominated for large stretches, but Mario Petit made good saves in the Green goal in the first half, then Green rallied with two late goals to pull ahead. Lucas Skrumeda scored the winner with a minute left with one of his patented rushes up ice from his defensive position, just forcing the puck in at the near post.
– Ivan Nikolishin had the goal of the game when he dragged the puck past the defender and slapped a shot into the far corner off the rush. It was a demonstration of what the Russian is capable of: He has gamebreaking ability. Finn Waltteri Hopponen may have shown a little more overall so far in camp, but I’m not sure he can do what Nikolishin did on that goal. As said many times before, Everett’s Euro situation is an interesting one.
– Red moved 15-year-old phenom Patrick Khodorenko onto a line with Josh Winquist for this one and it made all the difference. Khodorenko wasn’t much of a factor yesterday when he was playing alongside other rookies, but being paired with a skilled veteran better allowed Khodorenko to show what he can do. He has both skill and vision.
Red 3, Grey 1
Red goals: Chase Faulkner, Kyle Raymond, Brayden Low.
Grey goal: Linden Penner.
Red goalies: Nathan Cvar (11-11), Daniel Cotton (9-8), Carter Hart (6-6).
Grey goalies: Nik Amundrud (19-17), Josh Stone (24-23).
– The game started out as a spirited back-and-forth affair, but as the game wore on Team Red took more and more control. Good play by the Grey goalies kept the margin from being greater. Red finished the round robin 1-2, Grey 0-3. The same two teams meet for third place Sunday morning.
– Red defenseman Kevin Davis is a subtle player. The 16-year-old and 2012 first-round bantam pick doesn’t wow. He’s not big, not particularly fast, doesn’t display flashy skills. But he always seems to be in the right place at the right time, and he always seems to make the smart play. If he can make the pass, he makes the pass. If he can’t, he chips it out. If he can get the shot from the point through, he takes the shot. If not, he dumps it down low. He’s very effective without really standing out.
– Alec Mehr made one of the best plays I’ve seen so far in camp in setting up Grey’s goal. In transition he saw a seam, attacked it aggressively, had the vision to see the passing lane, then delivered a bullet for Linden Penner to tap in. If he did that in a game that counted it’d show up on WHL Plays of the Week.
Blue 4, Green 3
Blue goals: Tyler Sandhu 2, Jake Durflinger, Carson Stadnyk.
Green goals: Waltteri Hopponen, Reid Petryk, Logan Aasman.
Blue goalies: Logan Linklater (14-11), Solomon Burk (9-9), Austin Lotz (11-11).
Green goalies: Mario Petit (13-9), Quinton Reynolds (14-14).
– This game sure shifted suddenly. Green dominated early and quickly built a 3-0 lead, then Blue turned things completely around, scoring four straight before the first half was over. Green pressured late, and Ben Betker had the tie game on his stick with about three seconds remaining, but he put the puck wide. Blue finished a perfect 3-0, Green 2-1. The same two teams square off for gold tomorrow morning.
– Austin Lotz is in midseason form. He has yet to allow a goal in training camp. He’s the Team Blue’s closer, twice coming on in the second half of one-goal games and shutting down the opposition.
– After a quiet afternoon Friday, Tyler Sandhu awakened big time today. He’s being counted on to be a significant offensive producer this season following his impressive rookie campaign, and today he was that guy. The line of Sandhu, Carson Stadnyk and Jake Durflinger was easily the best of the day. Durflinger continued to impress playing alongside the veterans. I believe the plan has been for Durflinger, a smaller forward who plays an agitating game while also producing points, to come to Everett next year. But the way he’s playing, maybe he’s ready now.
– I’m not sure what Everett’s plans are with Lucas Skrumeda. I don’t know that the Tips have room for the 17-year-old defenseman from Team Green, with six veterans in camp along with signed 16-year-olds Kevin Davis and Noah Juulsen (both of whom looked very good today). But he brings excitement with his ability to rush the puck, and he probably deserves a closer look.
– Reid Petryk as a defenseman? Well, let’s just say I doubt the coaches would encourage him to play that way in a real game.
Blue 3-0, +5
Green 2-1, +3
Red 1-2, -2
Grey 0-3, -6
8 a.m. — Volunteer Cup bronze-medal game, Red vs. Grey
9:45 a.m. — Volunteer Cup gold-medal game, Blue vs. Green
3 p.m. — Annual Green vs. Grey game