Brayden McNabb extended his career-best point streak to nine games on Friday by picking up two assists in Kootenay's 7-3 dumping of Memorial Cup host Brandon. The rugged dman, who upped his season point number to 12, also picked up his third fighting major of the year as retribution after a teammate absorbed a hit from 5'10 Wheatie, Darren Bestland.
Instigator and misconduct included.
Sure the Ice would prefer their #1 dman to stay out of the box, but McNabb continues to embrace a leadership role, and further demonstrate the traits that made him the subject of this post a couple of weeks back. His dozen points is only equaled by the number of punches he's landed on his WHL counterparts. Continuing to burn both ends can only advance him up the list of Sabres blueline properties.
In the OHL, Nick Crawford (-1) assisted on the game winning goal as Saginaw outshot Sudbury 49-21 to earn the 5-3 win. Crawford has points in three straight games, and a total of eight on the year (2+6). Wolves forward Marcus Foligno (-1), who entered the game third in the OHL in PIM, had an assist, a minor penalty, and nearly scored his second goal of the year when he pinged a pipe in the opening stanza. In the early second period, the 6'3 grinder found the puck on his stick as soon as he exited the penalty box, and immediately pushed it to Jared Stall for Sudbury's second goal. It was Foligno's third point on the year.
At Chicoutimi, Jacob Lagacé (+1) scored the game's only goal as the Sags blanked Shawinigan, 1-0. The tally, Lagacé's sixth of the season, came in the opening minute of the second period with both teams at even strength.
In NCAA action, Corey Tropp scored a power play and added an assist as Michigan State throttled Clarkson, 6-1. It was a nice start for the once-proud Spartan program after a 2008-09 campaign that saw the team finish 10-23-5. Freshman Zach Josepher had two goals and two goal assists in his first D1 contest to lead the MSU attack.
At the Ralph, Brad Eidsness had to make just 15 saves as North Dakota closed out Merrimack, 5-2. Both goals against came in the first period - one off a screen where he stood little chance against a waiting rebounder and the other on a breakway. The sophomore went fairly untested in the final 40-minutes as the Sioux forwards went in waves at the other end. Blueliner Corey Fienhage sat for the Sioux, with freshman Andrew MacWilliam and sophomore Ben Blood getting the early looks. Fienhage was a little shaky in Sunday's exhibition tilt, and will need a little more practice time to work his way back into the lineup.
At Magness, defenseman Drew MacKenzie was -1 as Vermont coughed up a two-goal lead in a 5-4 loss to Denver. The Catamounts were leading 4-2 late in the second period when summer camper Brayden Irwin earned five and a game for a checking from behind penalty. The momentum shifted from there, as the Pios poured in three goals in the final twenty minutes to get the opening night W.
Nick Eno made 32 saves as Bowling Green dropped a 3-2 decision to Minnesota State. The junior netminder made many excellent saves throughout, including stops on all 16 shots he faced in the middle period. Maverick right wing Justin Jokinen was even with a shot on goal.
Connor Knapp worked the door as #1 Miami needed OT to defeat St. Cloud, 3-2. The 6'5 sophomore will get the Saturday start in the RedHawks net..
In the USHL, Roo Adams was even with two shots on goal as Chicago doubled-up Waterloo, 6-3. The Steel have started the season with three straight victories.