Saturday, October 23, 2010

Stars - Broncos Preview.

Tonight the Battlefords North Stars and Humboldt Broncos will meet for the third time this season. Each team has a victory against the other this season and both games have required overtime. Humboldt beat the Stars 7-6 in September, and the Stars beat Humboldt 4-3 earlier this month. Here is the preview:


Record: 11-1-0-1 (First in the Bauer Conference.)

Who's Up Front:

Through 13 games, nobody has more points than Humboldt forward Justin Buzzeo. The 20-year-old has 27 points in 13 games, and has established himself as the early favourite to win the SJHL Scoring Title. But Buzzeo is not alone. Jeremy Boyer has tallied 17 points in only eight games, and Spencer Braaten is always a big scoring threat. The 'Killer B's' will be out in full force tonight, meaning that once again the Stars will have their hands full defensively.

Who's on D:

18-year-old defenceman Josh Roach is on fire. Roach has 16 points in 13 games and has contributed nicely to the Humboldt Powerplay with three goals. Whenever Roach is on the ice, the Stars will have to be careful not to give him too much time and space.

Who's in Goal:

Humboldt coach Dean Brockman has a difficult decision to make. 18-year-old netminder Matt Hrynkiw is 5-0 with the best goals against average and save percentage in the SJHL. On the other hand, Andrew Bodnarchuk is the reigning MVP of the SJHL. Bodnarchuk has played in both games against the Stars so far this year, so one might think that Hrynkiw is due for a shot against the Stars, but the only person who knows for sure is Dean Brockman.


Nick Keller has paid his dues as a Humboldt Bronco and his play has steadily improved over the past three seasons. Keller is tied for second in team scoring, and provides a lot of energy and grit to Dean Brockman's lineup. The Stars need to keep their eye on Keller, and make sure that they don't give him too much room to work with. A strong game from Keller would go a long way in leading Humboldt to their 12th victory of the season.


Record: 5-7-1-1 (Fifth Place in the Bauer Conference.)

Who's Up Front:

The Battlefords North Stars are coming off a game where they scored eight times on the Yorkton Terriers. Offensively this team is clicking on all cylinders and perhaps nobody is more confident right now than Kyle Hall. Hall has five goals in his past two games, and is finally being rewarded for all of his hard-work as of late. With the emergence of Hall as a goal-scoring threat, Humboldt will need to make sure that they defend his line well.

Who's on D:

Through the first 14 games, Woody Klassen has proven to be one of the team's most valuable players. He has tallied 15 points in 14 games. Klassen has provided the right mix of offence and physicality on the back-end, and he'll need to be at his best tonight to help the Stars keep Humboldt's high-powered offence in check.

Who's in Goal:

As of 2:00 this afternoon Ken Pearson still had no made up his mind between Graham Hildebrand and Alex Sirard.


Colin Phaneuf and Keith Grondin will have a different line-mate for tonight's game.

Blake Tatchell will not be making the trip to Humboldt tonight because he will be with his family in North Battleford, celebrating the life of his grandmother who recently passed away. Our sincere condolences go out to the entire Tatchell family, and I certainly wish them all of the best during this difficult time.

Tatchell's absence will be tough for the Stars, as he has been one of the most consistent forwards of any team so far this season. Does Ken Pearson move Colin Phaneuf to center and add a winger to the left side? Or does he put Kyle Hall, Nathan Tomac or Shayne Morrissey with those two? It'll be up to the entire crop of forwards to make up for Tatchell's offence. Given how Ken Pearson's team has been able to persevere lately, it shouldn't be a problem.

You can catch tonight's game live on CJNB/CJNS starting at 7:15 with the Sask-Tel pregame show. I'll have the call for you tonight at 7:30.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I see you said Ken hasn't made up his mind between Hildebrand and Sirard, whats the status of Kyle Birch?