- Created: 22 November 2015
The Generals hit the road this past weekend for a two-game series vs. the Tri-Cities Outlaws, their first trip to Kennewick, Washington this season.
After dropping a frustrating two-game home series to the Bellingham Blazers the week before, the Generals looked to bounce back and keep pace with both Bellingham and Wenatchee in the standings. Entering the weekend, the Generals were 1-1 vs. the Outlaws, splitting a two-game series at The Rink Exchange on October 23rd and 24th.
Friday, November 20th: Generals - 2, Outlaws - 1
First Star: Kory Palmer - GW Goal
Second Star: Christopher Pritchard - 24 saves
Third Star: Christian "Buddy" Dale - Goal
After falling to the Outlaws, 2-1, when these two teams last met on October 24th, the Generals earned a hard-fought revenge victory on Friday night and snapped a three-game losing streak in the process. It didn't take long for the Generals to open the scoring as captain Christian "Buddy" Dale capitalized on an Outlaws turnover and rifled home his team-leading eighth goal of the season less than two minutes into the first period.
Still holding a 1-0 lead later in the first, former Generals defenseman Sheldon O'Neil leveled the score with his fourth goal in five games. After surrendering first period goals, both goaltenders clamped down as the Generals' Christopher Pritchard and the Outlaws' Taylor Merkely each turned away 12 shots in the second period.
The 1-1 tie remained until midway through the final period when Kory Palmer scored his sixth goal of the season, the eventual game-winner and his first GWG as a Generals player.
The Generals outshot the Outlaws, 17-5, en route to winning the overall shot total, 46-24, and securing the 2-1 win in the series opener. Goaltender Christopher Pritchard notched his fifth win of the season.
Saturday, November 21st: Generals - 6, Outlaws - 0
First Star: Zealand Walterscheid - 40 saves
Second Star: Cody Arbelovsky - 2 goals, assist
Third Star: Christian "Buddy" Dale - Goal
After a frustrating and scoreless twenty nine minutes of hockey, Cody Arbelovsky opened the scoring at the 9:14 mark of the second period with his eighth goal of the season, tying him for the team lead with captain Christian "Buddy" Dale. Less than a minute later, local product Jack Thornton beat Outlaws goaltender Titan Greer five-hole for his first career Juniors goal.
The 2-0 lead would hold until the 7:41 mark of the third period when Kory Palmer would score his second goal of the weekend and seventh overall. Three goals in a 100 second span late in the third period put the game well out of reach as Issac Vincent, Cody Arbelovsky (2), and newcomer Morgan Neal all scored during that stretch. With two goals on the evening, Cody Arbelovsky has now scored seven goals in his last six games and now finds himself in the top ten in the NPHL in both goals (t-10th) and overall points (t-5th).
Meanwhile, Zealand Walterscheid put together arguably his best Juniors performance to date, which included multiple breakaway saves on NPHL goal-leader Aaron Questad to highlight a 40-save night for the New Maxico native, earning his fourth win of the season. The shutout is Walterscheid's second of the season after previously blanking the Seattle Ravens on October 9th.
Next Up: Wenatchee Wolves
When: Saturday and Sunday - both games at 2:35pm
Where: Wenatchee, Washington - Town Toyota Center
The Generals now prepare for their toughest test of the season as they take a weekend trip to Wenatchee for their first meeting with the Wolves this season. The Wolves enter this weekend a perfect 16-0, the lone undefeated team left across all of Tier III Junior Hockey.
Serving as a development team for the BCHL's Wenatchee Wild, the Wolves blend a solid mixture of returners and newcomers in a deep roster that boasts 17 different goal scorers. In net, veterans Max Flynn and Bronson Moore have split duties this season, with both net-minders posting indentical 8-0 records and (even more surprisingly) the exact same GAA of 1.25.
The powerful Wolves offense that has outscored NPHL opponents 101-20 is led by NPHL leading goal and point scorer Hayden Givens (19/14/33) as well as forwards Brayden Durante (7/14/21) and Griffin Wiencek (10/11/21).
The Wolves will start the weekend by hosting the Bellingham Blazers for one game on Friday night before kicking off the two-game sereis vs. the Generals on Saturday.
Key to the Matchup: Wolves PP vs. Generals PK - The power play unit of Wenatchee has scored on nearly one out of every four power plays, easily the best mark in the NPHL, but they'll face a tough task this weekend against a Generals penalty killing unit that enters the weekend mere percentage points behind Bellingham for best PK unit in the league (87.21%).
NPHL Weekend Recap
Wenatchee Wolves vs. Seattle Ravens
The Wolves stayed perfect in the NPHL after a two-game road sweep over the Ravens at the Kent Valley Ice Center on Friday and Sunday. Seattle kept it close on Friday night despite being outshot by Wenatchee, 63-15. Ravens goaltender Josh Stone, a former Bellingham Blazers netminder, was stellar in net but his efforts weren't enough as Givens (2) and Wiencek accounted for the scoring in a 3-0 Wolves win.
Sunday's afternoon matchup proved much easier for the Wolves as they cruised to an 8-1 win behind goals by Durante, Hendry, Stickle (2), Givens, Booth (2), and Ignatovich while Max Flynn picked up the win in net.
Meanwhile, Seattle's hot-and-cold first season in the NPHL continues as they dropped their fifth and sixth consecutive games after previously notching a five-game win streak. Jake Best netted the only Ravens goal of the weekend, his fifth goal of the season.
Bellingham Blazers vs. West Sound Warriors
The Blazers kept pace with the Wolves this weekend earning a two-game sweep of a home-and-home series with the West Sound Warriors. After falling in the Cascade Cup Finals to the Warriors last season, the Blazers have turned the tabled and are now 3-0 this season vs. the Warriors after wins of 7-1 and 11-1, respectively, this past weekend.
Bellingham racked up an eye-popping 76 shots in the series opener Friday night, highligthed by Brett Hanson's two-goal performance and a 21-save night from goaltender Broderick Parker. Emotions boiled over with less than four minutes to go in the game as fighting misconduct penalties were assesed to four players - two on each team - setting the table for a tense rubber match the following night in Bremerton.
However, there was little suspense the following night as Karson DeRego scored four goals, Kevin Duncan scored three of his own, and four other Blazers scored en route to a 11-1 triumph over the Warriors. Continuing the "two-tendy" trend that the NPHL's top teams have stuck with, Blazers head coach Mark Collins started Christopher Alexakis for the series and the goaltender stopped 22 of 23 shots faced.
NPHL Upcoming Games
West Sound Warriors at Seattle Ravens - 6:35pm
Bellingham Blazers at Wenatchee Wolves - 7:35pm
Bellingham Blazers at Tri-Cities Outlaws - 7:05pm
Seattle Ravens at West Sound Warriors - 7:35pm
Bellingham Blazers at Tri-Cities Outlaws - 3:05pm
New Faces - Morgan Neal, a participant at the Generals' Main Camp this past summer, joined the team this weekend for the two-game series in Kennewick, Washington vs. the Outlaws. Neal, a defenseman from Idaho, quickly shook off any rust he had and fit into the team nicely, including scoring the final goal of Saturday's 6-0 win. Neal will re-join the team for the remainder of the season after the holiday break.
Blood Drive - Saturday, December 19th will be Blood Drive Night presented by Lane Blood Center, with the Generals wearing specialty "zombie" jerseys vs. the Seattle Ravens to commemorate the cause. Lane Blood Center will be at The Rink Exchange from 4-7pm taking blood donations, and the Generals will be giving away free tickets to anyone who donates blood before the game. Those that donate blood will also have a chance to win one of the specialty "zombie: Generals jerseys, will will be unveiled at a later date. Don't wait - purchase your tickets to see these one-of-a-kind jerseys in action.
Home Cookin' - After a road-heavy start to the season, the Generals will play seven straight home games throughout December and January, including games vs. the first-place Wenatchee Wolves, the Seattle Ravens, the Tri-Cities Outlaws, and the defending NPHL champion West Sound Warriors.
Holiday Break - The Generals will have their holiday break from December 20th until January 14th, with games resuming on January 15th and 16th at 7:35pm vs. the Tri-Cities Outlaws at The Rink Exchange. The Generals will play nine of their final seventeen regular season games at home. Be there for the playoff push. Get your tickets now.