BROOKS, AB (February 8, 2019) – The Brooks Bandits (48-3) became just the second team in Alberta Junior Hockey League history to win 24 straight games, shutting out the visiting Lloydminster Bobcats 8-0 on Friday night at the Centennial Regional Arena.
The win, featuring a 12-save shutout by goaltender Tanner Marshall (Kelowna, BC), his fourth shutout in just nine games, also clinched the Dave Duchak Trophy as regular season champions for the Bandits for the third time in franchise history, with the team clinching home ice advantage throughout its playoff run.
Captain Nathan Plessis (Salmon Arm, BC) led the way early, scoring on a rebound of a Luke Bast (Red Deer, AB) shot just 3:30 into the game for the eventual game-winner, and doubling the team’s lead at the 8:11 mark on a perfectly placed wrist shot from the slot. Ryan Mahshie (Stoney Creek, ON) scored his 30th of the season at 10:20 on a similar wrist shot from the slot, while Arnaud Vachon (Ajax, ON) scored on a five-hole shot off the rush at 18:39 to make it 4-0 after one period, with Brooks outshooting the Bobcats 20-3 in the opening twenty minutes.
Less than a minute into the second, Lloydminster’s Jordan Borysiuk was tripped on a breakaway and awarded a penalty shot, but his subsequent wrister was stopped by Marshall’s left arm to keep the game 4-0.
Simon Gravel (Boucherville, QC) batted a puck out of midair and into the net at 4:45 on the power play to make it 5-0, while Ray Christy (St. Paul, MN) scored from the slot at 6:14 on a setup from Vachon off the rush at 6:14, then scored his second of the game at 11:39 on a shot from the top of the crease for a 7-0 lead. Randy Hernandez (Miami, FL) had the only goal of the third period, knocking in a rebound backhander at 16:44 to notch the 8-0 final. The Bandits outshot Lloydminster 51-12 in the game, going 1 for 5 on the power play and a perfect 1 for 1 on the penalty kill.
The Bandits will have the opportunity to set a new record for consecutive wins on Saturday night when they host the Fort McMurray Oil Barons at 7 PM. Tickets are available online at tickets.brooksbandits.ca.