PREVIEW: Vancouver Giants vs. Edmonton Oil Kings (Game #57)
Tonight at the LEC, the Vancouver Giants continue a busy stretch of four games in five nights when they take the ice at home against the Edmonton Oil Kings. The Giants are coming off a spirited 4-2 road victory Wednesday in Portland and are looking to extend their home winning streak to five straight. Meanwhile the Edmonton Oil Kings have rattled off two straight wins on their current road trip trip through B.C. and have played the Giants tough in each of their first two meetings on the season.
EDMONTON OIL KINGS
Road Record: 10-18-1-0
Last Game: A 7-6 shootout victory over the Victoria Royals on Wednesday
Last 10: 4-5-1-0
Goals For/Goals Against: 155/246 (-91)
Power Play: 17.1% (21st in WHL)
Penalty Kill: 71.8% (22nd in WHL)
Leading Scorers: Trey Fix-Wolansky (56GP – 24G – 42A – 66PTS), Tomas Soustal (53GP – 15G – 33A – 48PTS), Colton Kehler (55GP – 26G – 16A – 42PTS)
WHO’S UP FRONT:
Trey Fix-Wolansky: The 18-year-old has points in each of his past three game and comes into tonight’s game with the most points of any Edmonton skaters. In two games against Vancouver so far, Fix-Wolansky has a goal and two assists. He’s already 12 points ahead of his rookie totals from 2016-17.
Tomas Soustal: The 20-year-old product of the Czech Republic has had a terrific WHL career that has spanned the past four seasons. Currently he sits second in team scoring with 48 points and leads all Oil Kings with two goals and four assists for six points in two games against Vancouver.
WHO’S ON D:
Conner McDonald: 18-year-old Conner McDonald is enjoying a terrific third season in the WHL. He’s suited up in all 56 games for Edmonton so far and leads all Oil King blueliners with 32 points. In two games against the Giants he’s got a goal and four assists for five points.
Matthew Robertson: The 16-year-old comes into tonight’s game with four goals and eight assists for 12 points in 51 games. Robertson was selected seventh overall in 2016 and was the second defenceman selected in the Bantam Draft that year. The first: Bowen Byram of the Vancouver Giants.
WHO’S IN GOAL:
Todd Scott: The former Vancouver Giant has enjoyed a strong rookie season in the WHL and since joining Edmonton has compiled a 2-4 record with an .879 save percentage and a 4.17 goals-against-average through nine appearances. Overall he’s 10-11-3-1. Odds are that he’ll get the nod tonight against his former team.
Brendan Semchuk: The Giants selected Brendan Semchuk 10th overall in the 2014 WHL Bantam Draft. He was dealt to the Oil Kings on January 10th along with Todd Scott in exchange for Davis Koch. Semchuk has scored four goals while adding three assists for seven points in 14 games with Edmonton since the trade. No doubt he’ll be charged up to face his former team for the first time since the trade.
Home Record: 17-9-2-1
Last Game: A 4-2 road victory Wednesday in Portland
Last 10: 5-4-1-0
Goals For/Goals Against: 190/194 (-4)
Power Play: 20.6% (14th in WHL)
Penalty Kill: 79.8% (5th in WHL)
Leading Scorers: Ty Ronning (55GP – 51G – 20A – 71PTS), James Malm (56GP – 17G – 35A – 52PTS), Tyler Benson (43GP – 19G – 32A – 51PTS)
WHO’S UP FRONT:
Ty Ronning: The Giants leading scorer is coming off a three-point performance Wednesday in what ended up as a 4-2 road victory for the G-Men in Portland. Ronning’s 50th goal tied the game and his 51st was the game-winner. He now has 15 goals in his last 12 games and has the distinction of being the first Giant to ever score 50 goals in a season.
James Malm: James Malm has gone 11 games without a goal. That said he’s still second in team scoring with 52 points in 56 games. Tonight could be a breakout night for him though as he leads all Giants with three goals and three assists in two meetings with Edmonton already in 2017-18.
WHO’S ON D:
Bowen Byram: Byram had two assists in Wednesday’s win in Portland to now put his totals this season to six goals and 14 assists (20 points). He’s got three goals and three assists over the span of his last six games, and tonight will mark the second time that Byram has gone head-to-head with Matthew Robertson, who was the second d-man selected in the 2016 WHL Bantam Draft.
WHO’S IN GOAL:
David Tendeck: The 18-year-old has been busy as of late for the Giants facing 134 shots over the course of his last three appearances. Over that span thoug he’s stopped 127 of the shots fired his way for a save percentage of .947. He’s been named the first star in three of his past four victories dating back to January 31st against Calgary.
Davis Koch: The 19-year-old is really starting to come on for the Vancouver Giants. The offense hasn’t blown anybody away, but he’s a +5 through 12 games as a Giant and has two goals and four assists for six points in that span. He’s thrived alongside Ty Ronning and Brayden Watts and no doubt will be extra charged up to face his former squad for the first time since January 10th.