Re-Live 2018 – Round 1 Game 4: Pats 6 Broncos 3 (Series tied 2-2)

Photo by David Zammit for scbroncos.com

In a series that has been a back-and-forth affair so far it was Regina’s turn to have control in Game 4.

The Pats came out of their offensive shell to beat Swift Current 6-3 and tie their first round best-of-seven series at two.

“I think the first two periods we didn’t play well at all,” said Broncos forward Tyler Steenbergen. “We came out in the third and pushed back, but I think it was already a little too late. We have to let go of this one pretty quickly and get ready for (Game 5) Friday.”

CLICK HERE FOR THE FULL STORY FROM SWIFT CURRENT ONLINE

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Re-Live 2018: “This isn’t a field trip!”

Broncos

The first round series between the Pats and Broncos oddly had a break between the third and fourth games in Regina. That meant an extra day for the Broncos to hang out in the Queen City so colour commentator Andrew McCormack joked with Swift Current associate coach Ryan Smith about seeing the sites in Saskatchewan’s capital. He quickly shut that down saying “this isn’t a field trip” and it was all serious business for the eventual WHL Champs.

Would a day off slow Swift Current’s momentum and give the Pats a chance to respond?

Both teams hit the ice for practice with questions looming about their injured players. The Broncos had really asserted themselves in Game 3 and Regina would need an answer. What tricks did veteran coach John Paddock have up his sleeve to achieve that in Game 4? We will find out tomorrow!

Meanwhile, the Prince Albert Raiders had Moose Jaw on the ropes in their Game 3 up 4-2 late before Moose Jaw came back to win the game in overtime. The battle between the other two East Division teams was closer than anticipated.

 

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Re-Live 2018 – Round 1 Game 3: Broncos 4 Pats 1 (SC leads series 2-1)

Broncos

Photo by David Zammit for scbroncos.com

Stuart Skinner made 39 saves as the Swift Current Broncos beat Regina 4-1 to take a 2-1 lead in their first round WHL playoff series.

Skinner has now stopped 101 of the 104 shots he has faced in the series.

Glenn Gawdin led the way offensively with two goals and an assist, while Tyler Steenbergen added three helpers and Giorgio Estephan had two.

“It was a good team effort,” said Broncos Associate Coach Ryan Smith. “A lot of gutsy play by us. They threw everything they had they played a good game too. It felt like a real playoff game. We will have to repeat that performance two more times if we want to win that series.”

CLICK HERE FOR THE FULL GAME 3 RECAP ON SWIFT CURRENT ONLINE

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Re-Live 2018: Travel Day to Regina

Broncos Pats Khaira

Sahvan Khaira defends against the Pats (photo by David Zammit for scbroncos.com)

March 25th, 2018 was a travel day for the Broncos as they headed off to Regina with Game 3 on their minds. The series started with two hotly contested games between two rivals who had almost identifcal records in the second half of the season. Regina earned a split on the road to steal home ice advantage. The Pats had to play without second half starting goaltender Max Paddock and deadline addition Jesse Gabrielle, while the Broncos lost top defenceman Artyom Minulin to injury during Game 1. That made a veteran with playoff experience like Sahvan Khaira all the more important. On Swift Current Online we had a story on Khaira’s ability to elevate his game come playoff time.

CLICK HERE FOR OUR STORY ON KHARA IN THE PLAYOFFS

Sahvan Khaira seems to thrive when the heat is really on.

The Swift Current Broncos defenceman made his name during last season’s playoffs as he was incredibly difficult to play against in their battles with Moose Jaw and Regina.

“For most teams out there the post-season is more intense,” Khaira said before the first round got started. “Everyone has the attitude where you’re laying thei rbodies on the line. It’s kind of a do-or-die situation spread out and they’re doing everything they can to help their team win.”

Khaira had scouts buzzing in the playoffs last season and has already brought that hard-nosed style of game to the playoffs in a split against Regina in the first two games of this season’s first round series.

“I think that type of play is my type of play,” Khaira said. “It was easy to get in that frame of mind. I expect to bring much of that to this series as well.”

Both teams have made physical play a priority in the early going. That’s something Khaira predicted before the series and something he believes they can do to slow down Regina’s skilled players.

“In a series that could go for a long amount of games the biggest thing is laying the body,” he noted. “It’s wear and tear on their bodies. Teams do it to us so it’s one of the things we can do to them.”

Back tomorrow with Game 3 from Regina!

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Re-Live 2018 – Round 1 Game 2: Pats 2 Broncos 1

Viveiros_at_sign_unveiling

Photo by David Zammit for scbroncos.com

Cameron Hebig scored twice and Ryan Kubic made 32 saves leading Regina to a 2-1 win over Swift Current in Game 2 of their first round series.

The Pats battled hard to get the split every road team desires at the start of a best-of-seven series.

“They came out a little bit stronger than yesterday,” said Broncos defenceman Colby Sissons. “We matched it for the most part, but our intensity wasn’t there for the whole 60. A few lapses and a few too many penalties.”

CLICK HERE FOR THE FULL RECAP FROM SWIFT CURRENT ONLINE

“We need to score,” said Broncos Associate Coach Ryan Smith. “We had some good looks. Not just one or two players but a number of guys. It’s easier said than done. It’s not easy to score. If everybody could do it everybody would do it. We have to find the back of the net, we have to get to the net. That’s the biggest difference right now. We’re clutching our stick a little bit. They played well. They deserved the win.”

 

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Re-Live 2018 – Round 1 Game 1: Broncos 3 Pats 0

Broncos Blazers Elder

Photo by David Zammit for scbroncos.com

The Swift Current Broncos were looking for playoff experience when they added Stuart Skinner from Lethbridge at the trade deadline.

The veteran delivered with 34 saves for the shutout as the Broncos beat Regina 3-0 in Game 1 of their first round series.

“I felt great,” Skinner said. “I was really excited. A lot of nerves going into it, but felt good after the start and the boys played a heck of a game. It was a full team win tonight.”

CLICK HERE FOR THE FULL RECAP FROM SWIFT CURRENT ONLINE

“You want to start off on the right foot and I thought we did,” said Broncos Associate Coach Ryan Smith. “Building a lead like that always helps. It was a hard fought game. They came at us, they threw a lot of different looks at us and they played well. We just capitalized on our chances.”

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Re-Live the 2018 Playoff Run

Viveiros_at_sign_unveiling

With no playoffs for the rebuilding Broncos this season, I thought it would be fun to kind of re-live the playoff run from last season day-by-day as a fun look back to what was a very exciting spring.

We all knew this season was going to be a whole lot different after all the moves made to get stronger for the championship run. I’m sure most fans expected to be sitting out the spring. While we all understand it, why not take a quick look back throughout the spring to remember what the run was like?

MARCH 22nd, 2018 – WE WAIT

The most anticipated WHL series in the first round of the playoffs paired the loaded up Swift Current Broncos and the Memorial Cup host Regina Pats. Regina, Swift Current and Moose Jaw had almost identical records after a trade deadline that saw both the Broncos and Pats really load up their rosters with depth and star level talent.

The fact that the two clubs were meeting in the first round of the playoffs created a lot of conversation on the WHL playoff format. One of the best teams in the WHL was going home after the first round. It was also a re-match of a seven-game battle in the second round of the 2017 playoffs that saw Regina erase a 3-1 deficit to advance over their rivals. The Pats had also knocked the Broncos out of the 2015 playoffs, had elmininated the Lethbridge Hurricanes (featuring Stuart Skinner, Giorgio Estephan & Tanner Nagel) two seasons in a row and had knocked off the Calgary Hitmen (featuring Matteo Gennaro, Beck Malenstyn & Andrew Fyten) in the playoffs as well. Swift Current had some redemption on their minds!

CLICK HERE FOR OUR SERIES PREVIEW FROM SWIFT CURRENT ONLINE

“It’s really close,” said Broncos Coach/Director of Player Personnel Manny Viveiros. “They’ve made considerable changes after the trade deadline, so have we also, and both teams have greatly improved their roster. It’s going to be a real good series here. There’s not a favourite… we know how good they are and how good they can be. It’s a very, very even series.”

“Instead of getting too low or too high you’ve got to stay even keel,” Skinner said. “My first time in playoffs we went down a couple games in the first round and kind of started to freak out and get a little intense. It was a good learning experience to go through that when I was 17 so I was able to relax and do my best… that’s what I did last year. That’s how the mental game goes.”

“I don’t think you go out changing a bunch of things,” Paddock said. “We know each other well. Maybe more so in how the teams play than the individual make up of the team. I think Manny has done a tremendous job the last two years. They play a certain way very consistently so I don’t think that’s going to change.”

“That’s one of the first things I thought about,” said former Hurricane Giorgio Estephan. “Knowing that we were playing against them stuff like that never leaves the back of your mind. It stings and it’s going to be a key contributor to our motivation for sure.”

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