This blogger has slacked a little the past few days... so here goes!
- Stamps on top of the MJ. Yes, they've played as many or more games than most teams, but the Swan Valley Stampeders lead the MJHL in wins and points. Jayson Argue shutout the Wayway Wolverines for the second time this season, stopping 25 pucks last night in a 2-0 Stampeder win. Argue, 17, now leads the league in shutouts. The Stamps are 9-3 on the season, good for 18 points, 1 more than the 8-0-0-1 OCN Blizzard. OCN's the only team in the MJ without a regulation loss, infact every other team has at least three regulation losses. They'll start to separate the men from the boys a little bit next week, when Swan Valley travels to OCN on Tuesday, and to Portage on Friday. The Stamps haven't seen either of those Sherwood opponents yet.
- Yorkton drops another at home. They won't be pushing panic buttons by any means, but after going 9 games without a regulation loss, the Yorkton Terriers lost at home in back to back nights, including 7-3 to Estevan last night. Robbie Ciolfi scored all three Terrier goals, his 6th, 7th, and 8th of the season. Ben Findlay answered with 3 of his own for Estevan. Yorkton out-shot the Bruins 39-25. Devin Peters was lifted after allowing the first 6 goals, including 5 in the second.
- Melville and Swan Coach's Shows are posted under the Coach's Shows link.
- Inside The MJHL... new show should be up later today. I've got MJHL Commissioner Kim Davis talking about the All-Star Game announcement, and Player of the Week Matt Krahn from the OCN Blizzard. Might try to squeeze one more in today, to get some content from the Addison Division, but I'm probably good as far as length goes right now.
- The Knox are rolling. Fort Knox played their PJHL home opener on Wednesday, after 4 road games to start the year. The Knox won 7-1 over Assiniboia, improving to 4-1 on the season. Wendel Kaludjak scored a hat trick, while Dylan Mills added a pair, and Nathan Montgrand made 31 saves. We WILL be broadcasting FIVE PJHL games this season. I'll do a release in the coming days to tell you which ones. They all involve Fort Knox and/or Ochapowace.
- You can't question the marbles of former Terrier John Niebrandt. The Rhein, SK product, and now Kootenay Ice defenseman, dropped the mitts with Dylan McIlrath of the Moose Jaw Warriors on Wednesday. McIlrath is one of the true heavyweights of the WHL, and was taken in the Top 10 by the New York Rangers in this June's draft. It was Niebrandt's first scrap of the season, and he picked a tough combatant! Austin Bourhis played for P.A. in Vancouver, and Damon Severson suited up for Kelowna against Kamloops last night as well.
- Here's an outstanding read about a WHL Play-by-Play man. I scalped it from Bruce Luebke's blog, and it's about Randy Merkley, Voice of the Chilliwack Bruins. The article is about Randy's gameday routine and preparation. Everyone has their own routines and ways of remembering things. Not everyone puts in the hours and effort that Merkley does, and I would guess that his methods are as "high-end" as anyones, even at that level. I like to think I'm well-prepared, but I'm not in the same universe as the things you'll read in that story. It's a good reminder for someone like me, that if that's where you want to be, that's what it takes.
Done reading it yet?
I've often been asked how I keep track of 4 teams in two leagues. Truth be told, I usually only need to see a team once, and then I won't have to look at my lineup during the second game I see that team. For me, it's not so much the preparation, but a memory I can only thank the man upstairs for. I have the ability to remember which players shoot left and right. I could literally tell you which way every player on every team I've ever covered shoots. Mike Stackhouse tried quizzing me once, before giving up and saying "that's not even normal."
Just for fun... WITHOUT looking at anything... here are the 2005-06 Dauphin Kings, the first team I ever covered, and the way each of the players shoot.
T.J. Warkentin L
Cory Baldwin R
Ken Selby L
Joey Moggach L
Joel Malchuk R
Dean Yakura R
Zach Mertens L
Jason Shaw L
Steegan Stoski R
Josh Schellenberg L
Jeff Neustaeter R
Bryan Lodewyks R
Jeff Penner L
Tyler Harder R
Kaine Morran L
Jordan Pernarowski R
Kyle Lopez L
Steven Jacques L
What might be even creepier is I listed them in order of line combos and D pairings! And I bet you my next paycheque they're all correct.
Not trying to brag or anything... just telling you how I do it! It's not always hard work as much as it is a somewhat photographic memory I'm blessed and lucky to have.
My biggest challenge came last year, when the Terriers played La Ronge in the final. Due to our schedule, I hadn't seen La Ronge all season... and I knew if I was going to call a league final, I had to be ON, and not sound like I had no clue by looking at the roster more than the ice... so, I recorded myself listing off the Ice Wolves' roster, saying their name, number, hometown, any distinguishing qualities (height/weight), and, yes, which way they shoot. Made a world of difference for me... I emailed it to myself... put the headphones on and listened to it on the laptop a bunch of times on the way to La Ronge... and the first time I saw them, I felt like I'd seen them 100 times. Now I'll always know Robert Montfore is from Alaska and Dayton Fossum's a right handed shot and Nolan Souchotte is a small left-handed shooting forward!
- First place in the East Central 9-Man Football will be decided today when the Yorkton Sacred Heart Saints visit the Lumsden Devils. Both teams are 5-and-0... and Lumsden, the defending champs, really haven't been anywhere near losing a game yet this year.
- TEXT YOUR SCORE TO GX94!!! I'll beat this one to death over the next few weeks. If you're at any kind of local sporting event in our listening area, PLEASE get us the score, by sending a text to 620-9466 (620-WINN). We just started promoting it, and got our first score last night from the South Sask Midget "AA" Hockey League... Melville beat Yorkton 5-3. Nothing is too small, so please get us the detatils and we'll get it on! TEXT YOUR SCORE TO GX94... brought to you by D.R. Auto Extras, your SaskTel authorized dealer.