MEDICINE HAT, AB – A shot at executing a home-and-home sweep for the Medicine Hat Tigers, returning to the Canalta Centre to face the Swift Current Broncos for the second time in two days on Saturday.
Medicine Hat fired close to 50 shots on net against the Broncos on Friday out east, picking up a 3-1 victory and their fourth consecutive game with at least a point.
Once again, the Tigers will rely on their top line of James Hamblin, Tyler Preziuso, and Corson Hopwo to drive the offence after combining for six points on Friday in Swift Current.
Tigers vs. Broncos
For the third time this season, and second in so many nights, the Tigers and the Broncos will face off. The Orange and Black have won both previous meetings by scores of 2-0 and 3-1. Both contests have been played in Swift Current and Saturday’s matchup will be the first played at the Canalta Centre this season. The Tigers are 3-3-0-0 at home against the Broncos over the past five years. After Saturday, the Tigers and the Broncos will meet for a final time March 2nd in Medicine Hat.
View from Swift Current
The 9-32-2-1 Swift Current Broncos fell 3-1 to the Tigers on Friday night at home. Goaltender Riley Lamb made 43 saves on 46 shots faced while veteran forward Ethan O’Rourke was the lone goal scorer. The Broncos are led by rookie forward Ben King with 23 points (5G, 18A) and veteran Ethan Regnier with 22 points (7G, 15A). The Broncos’ next game after Saturday will be Friday, January 25th against the Saskatoon Blades.
Corson Hopwo is the rookie forward playing on the top line for the Tigers alongside captain James Hamblin and veteran Tyler Preziuso. The 17-year-old Duncan, BC native brings an element of skill, speed and compete level every game. He works hard every shift and continuously looks for ways to improve and contribute. Hopwo has scored in both of the Tabbies’ last two games and will be looking to make an impact in Saturday’s contest.
Captain James Hamblin picked up his 99th career WHL assist in Friday night’s contest against the Broncos. Hamblin is a hard-working two-way forward with a pass-first mentality but who also possess a great scoring touch. This season the 19-year-old Edmonton, AB native has been the Tigers top point producer all year averaging 1.20 points per game. In his career as Tiger, the former first-round bantam pick has suited up for 239 games, scoring 70 goals and picking up 99 assists.
It is a tight race for the top spot in the Central Division. The Tigers currently sit in fourth place in the Central but they are only two points behind the Edmonton Oil Kings who currently sit first.
James Hamblin is the Tigers’ top point producer with 54 points (24G, 30A) and he is ranked 14th in the league.
Linus Nässén is ranked 12th in the league amongst defenceman. The 20-year-old Florida Panthers draft pick has 5 goals and 29 assists in 40 games this season.
Daniel Baker is the Tigers’ top rookie with 13 points (2G, 11A).
Goaltender Mads Søgaard has been selected to play in the Sherwin-Williams CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game Jan 23rd in Red Deer. Søgaard will suit up for Team Cherry and he is ranked as B prospects by NHL Central Scouting. Ryan Chyzowski and Brett Kemp are ranked as C prospects.
Tigers alumni Kelly Hrudey will coach Team Orr during the Sherwin-Williams CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game.
Goaltender Mads Søgaard is ranked 4th in the league for GAA with 2.40 and 2nd in the league for save percentage with 0.931.
The AMA Skate with the Tigers is Sunday, January 20th from 2 to 3 PM. Everyone is welcome.
The Tigers’ Annual ATB Skills Competition will be Tuesday, January 29th at 7:00 p.m. Team Hamblin will take on Team Jevne and it is a suggested $5 donation to the MS Society at the door.
Eric Van Impe is the Tigers’ Academic Achiever of the month of December.
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