Thursday, November 28, 2013

Leier Player of The Game but Team WHL Loses to Russia 3-2

Pouliot Mixing It Up
At the Subway Super Series's Game 5 of 6, Taylor Leier came to play. He was widely believed to be the best player on the ice an CHL Insider Sam Cosentino sang his praises often during the broadcast, even saying at one time "Flyer fans better start buying his jersey now."

They were referring to his fantastic all around play in the game and also his beautiful shorthanded Goal in the second period that tied the game up for Team WHL. Leier was one of the penalty killing Forwards and closed up high on the blue line on two straight plays. The first time he got the puck out of the zone and on the second her sprang himself for a breakaway in which he backhanded the puck past Russian Goalie Ivan Nalimov.

Leier factored in one the only other WHL Goal as well, when he got the puck to team-mate Brendan Leipsic, who was promptly checked off the puck. Edmonton Oil Kings D-man Griffin Reinhart followed the play the wristed it past Nelimov to start the scoring.

Russia got the win when Forward Alexei Baskov scored on a wraparound 2:43 into the 3rd period. Portland's Nic Petan scored late in the game seemingly tying the game, but the Goal was disallowed as the referee ruled that the whistle had already sounded. This kind of ruling is not able to be overturned, so Team WHL takes the loss and the CHL falls behind in the series 3 games to 2. Team WHL needs to win tonight in Lethbridge, in regulation in order to win on total points (Russia has a shoot-out win).

Petan, Leier and Pouliot were easily some of the better players for Team WHL and seemed to be in on most of the scoring opportunities.

Team WHL out-shot the Russian Select team 44-25, but Nalimov was amazing, stopping 42 shots and making several highlight reel saves. Team WHL's Eric Comrie (Tri City American) made several great saves in his own right, but was not great on the deciding Goal. Comrie stopped 22 of 25 for the WHL.

Some changes will be made to the lineup in Lethbridge tonight, but all 4 Winterhawks will play again. This is a fantastic opportunity for the 4 Canadians to impress 2014 Canadian World Juniors Coach Brent Sutter, who is also coaching them on Team WHL.

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