Pre-season hockey is all about knocking the rust off and planting the skates firmly on the ice in game conditions. The Humboldt Broncos and the Kindersley Klippers both got that first taste of autumn hockey action this weekend with a home and home opener.
On Friday night, the Klippers paid their first visit to the EPA and opened strong with a tidy effort by Carter Cole to take the lead. Veteran goalie Benjamin Motew was tested on several offensive flurries in the early going. It didn’t take long for newcomer Dylan Nazareth to respond for Humboldt with an unassisted goal on a quick turnover. At the midway mark of the first, Travis Bryson potted one from the point to give the Horsemen the lead. Seconds later, second year winger Matthew Van Blaricom extended the lead, but in the dying seconds of the first, Kindersley cut the Bronco lead to one.
Kindersley threatened in the second period, with a pair of goals to Humboldt’s one, tying the game at 4 all. In the third, Humboldt found its footing again with two unassisted goals, one at the midway point by Connor Miller and the insurance marker in the last minute by Van Blaricom.
The Klippers scored a measure of revenge the second night, taking the game 2-1. Kindersley’s Logan Cox drew first blood on a power play effort. The Broncos’ Maddox Amaral returned the favour with a power play long ranger to tie. The scoring wrapped up in the second period on a ricochet effort by Klippers’ Cam Perlinger amidst plenty of traffic in front of the Bronco net.
In Kindersley, two new Broncos goaltenders split the duties. Aiden Fischer opened between the pipes, stopping 21 of 22 for his shift, while James Hunt turned away 14 of 15 in his second half effort.
The next pre-season outing for the Broncos is at the EPA on Tuesday night at 7 pm when old rivals, the Battlefords North Stars, roll in. Then it’s a weekend home and home test, starting Friday night in Melfort against the Mustangs. Saturday it’s back to the EPA for the hometown rematch.
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