Friday, September 2, 2011

Gameday: Smoke Eaters vs. Kings

Who: Trail Smoke Eaters vs. Powell River Kings
When: Sept. 2, 7:00 PM
Where: Cominco Arena, Trail

The Smokies get right back to work tonight against the Powell River Kings as the pre-season tournament continues. As I mentioned last night, Trail were neck-and-neck with Brooks in last night's 5-0 loss, outside of a four-minute stretch in the second period when the Bandits popped in four power-play goals. Head coach Bill Birks told me last weekend his primary concern with the club was goal-scoring, but if Trail continues to create offensive chances as they did last night (including a hit post by Erik Cooper in the first period), the goals will come.

I'm sure there will be a few changes in the lineup from last night. Birks mentioned every player remaining in camp would play in two of the three games this weekend. Veterans Beau Blanaru and Clayton McEwan both did not play yesterday.

I chatted with former Smokie Ryan Luiten after last night's game, have a listen here.

Our Opponent: The Kings come in to tonight's game having edged the Wenatchee Wild in a 6-5 overtime thriller yesterday. Teagan Waugh scored twice including the deciding goal, while new acquisition Evan Richardson added a pair of goals and an assist (Richardson, by the way, was Swift Current's first-round WHL bantam draft pick in 2009). The Kings split goaltending duties last night between returner Sean Maguire and newcomer (and RBC Cup winner) Jamie Phillips. Overage d-man Jon Jutzi did not play last night; he, Richardson, Craig Dalrymple and Daniel Schuler all have college commitments in their back pockets. The Kings are three-time defending BCHL Coastal Conference champs, and are sure to provide another challenge for the Smokies this evening.

Broadcast Info: no radio/audio for this one, but I will be posting regular Twitter updates as was the case last night.

Out of Town: The early game this afternoon at the Cominco Arena features Brooks and Wenatchee in what should be another fast-paced tilt. Puck drop is at 3:00. The Beaver Valley Nitehawks launch their pre-season tournament this afternoon as well at the BV Arena. Here's a look at the schedule:

12:00 PM -- Beaver Valley 1 vs. Beaver Valley 2
2:00 PM -- Grand Forks vs. Nelson
5:00 PM -- Grand Forks vs. Beaver Valley 1
7:00 PM -- Beaver Valley 2 vs. Nelson

12:00 PM -- Grand Forks vs. Beaver Valley 2
2:00 PM -- Nelson vs. Beaver Valley 1
5:00 PM -- Grand Forks vs. Beaver Valley 1
7:00 PM -- Nelson vs. Beaver Valley 2

9:00 AM -- first vs. fourth
11:00 AM -- second vs. third
1:00 PM -- consolation
3:00 PM -- final

Nitehawks coach Terry Jones was standing at the bottom of the broadcast booth ladder as I was walking out of the rink last night, I had a quick conversation with him which you can listen to here.

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