Calgary, AB (CKLQ) - Ben McCartney (2G-1A), Stelio Mattheos (1G-2A) and Zach Wytinck (3A) each had three-point nights as the Brandon Wheat Kings earned a 6-5 overtime win over the Calgary Hitmen on Friday night.
It was a trip down memory lane on Friday night for the Wheat Kings who hit the ice at the Stampede Corral for the first time since February 8th, 1987 in a game vs the Calgary Wranglers. Ironically enough, that game also ended in a 6-5 score in favor of the Wheaties.
Brandon was the first team to take part in the Hitmen's "Corral Series" which will pay homage to the Calgary Cowboys, Centennials and the Wranglers in a three-game series.
The Hitmen jumped on the board early as Tye Carriere grabbed a loose puck off a pad save from Ethan Kruger and buried the rebound into the Brandon goal just 1:53 into the game.
Caiden Daley would respond for Brandon just 0:15 seconds later. The Winnipeg, MB native's 4th of the year marks the first time in his career that he has scored in back-to-back games.
Powerplays were the story in the 2nd period as both teams struggled to stay out of the box.
Both teams would exchange powerplay goals early in the period. Stelio Mattheos and Luke Coleman scored just 0:39 apart, both on the man advantage to keep the game tied at two.
After Hitmen Captain Mark Kastelic put his team up by one on a goalmouth scramble, the Wheat Kings responded with another powerplay marker.
This time, Connor Gutenberg pinballed a shot from the point past Jack McNaughton to keep the game tied heading to the intermission.
In the third, both teams went back and forth countering one another each time the opposition took a lead. With less than five to go in the third, Ben McCartney fired a shot wide of the Calgary goal. The Hitmen defender quickly tried to move it up ice, but sent it off goaltender Jack McNaughton and into the back of the net to give the Wheat Kings the lead.
The Hitmen would tie the game late as Luke Coleman pounced on a rebound and notched his 2nd of the night to force extra time.
Just 0:16 into the overtime, Stelio Mattheos forced a turnover and set up Luka Burzan for the game-winner, lifting the Wheat Kings to their 22nd win of the season.
Ethan Kruger earned his 2nd consecutive victory, making 27 saves while McNaughton stopped 32 shots in the losing effort.
With the three points handed out tonight, Brandon sits just four points back of the Hitmen for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with a game in hand.
Brandon will conclude this road trip tomorrow night in Medicine Hat. (8:30 MB time on QCountry Radio).
CGY - Tye Carriere (5) (Focht, Coleman) 1:53
BWK - Caiden Daley (4) (Thompson, Iorio) 2:08
Shots: 14-9 Calgary
BWK - Stelio Mattheos (31) (Gutenberg, McCartney) 4on3
CGY - Luke Coleman (16) (Stotts, Yeryomenko) 6:37 PPG
CGY - Mark Kastelic (33) (Elder, Toder) 15:15
BWK - Connor Gutenberg (12) (Wytinck) 17:17 PPG
Shots: 9-8 Calgary
CGY - Mark Kastelic (34) (Elder, Zimmerman) 1:08 PPG
BWK - Ben McCartney (14) (Wytinck, Greig) 2:21
BWK - Ben McCartney (15) (Unassisted) 14:15
CGY - Luke Coleman (17) (Kastelic) 18:18
Shots: 18-10 Brandon
BWK - Luka Burzan (29) (Mattheos) 0:16
Final Shots: 37-32 Brandon