Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Gibson, Phaneuf, Tatchell Lead Stars in 8-3 Win.

The Battlefords North Stars scored 13 seconds in, and never really looked back. Cole Gibson, Colin Phaneuf and Blake Tatchell combined for six goals and 13 points, as the North Stars beat the Flin Flon Bombers 8-3. The win puts the Stars back into forth, and in control of their own destiny heading into tomorrow night's tilt with Nipawin.

Cole Gibson grabbed his 21st of the season just 13 seconds into the game. Woody Klassen and Blake Tatchell did the dirty-work and Gibson converted on a wide-open net in P.J. Musico.

Colin Phaneuf then broke out of his goal-scoring slump with his 20th. Phaneuf had the third or forth wack at a loose puck in front of P.J. Musico. Musico made a series of tremendous stops before Phaneuf was finally able to lift one over his sprawling body.

The Bombers moved within one when Andrew Johnston converted on a power-play. He was first stopped on a one-timer but grabbed his own rebound and beat Kyle Birch.

Shortly thereafter Tim Rollins notchedh is 10th on a great no-look pass from Tanner Schwab, and the Stars took a 3-1 lead into the first period.

Period two yielded more of the same. At the 4:26 mark, Colin Phaneuf buried his second of the game. This one came short-handed, and was created off a skillful rush from Brody Luhning.

Luhning wasn't done. He grabbed the first assist on the North Star's next goal which came from Cole Gibson on a power-play. Luhning was able to catch Musico leaning to one side, and he then centered to Gibson who had nothing but net to shoot at.

The Bombers got a late period goal from Brett Penner on a power-play, but trailed 5-2 heading into the third period.

35 seconds into the third, the Bombers crept a little closer. After a Blake Tatchell miss on one end, the Bombers came back the other direction and buried one on a breakaway. Andrew Johnston has now scored seven goals in his past three games.

The next time Blake Tatchell got an opportunity, he did not miss. At 12:12 on another power-play, Colin Phaneuf alertly kicked the puck to a wide-open Tatchell who then beat P.J. Musico for his 24th of the year.

66 seconds later, Tatchell converted again. This time it came off a breakaway, and spelt the end of the night for P.J. Musico after 41 shots faced.

In came Randy Graham who surrendered one goal to Keith Grondin, but stopped seven of eights hots faced.

Another third period highlight came from a fight between Flin Flon's James McNulty and Travis Sparrow of the Battlefords. Both participants landed their share of blows with McNulty scoring the take-down. McNulty appeared to get the worst of it though, as he was leaking afterwards.

It also appeared as though Randy Graham wanted to fight Kyle Birch. Birch resisted the temptation and finished the game with 42 saves on 45 shots faced.

The victory gives the Stars a season-split with the Flin Flon Bombers, and puts their magic number at one in order to clinch home-ice advantage in the Survivor Series.

Put simply, the Stars need to win just one of their next three games in order to have home-ice advantage with Flin Flon come February 25th. The Stars have a chance to clinch with a win tomorrow night in Nipawin.


cr_clear said...

Very impressed with Birch electing to not be goaded into fighting with Graham. Great game boys. Best wishes in your next three games.

Anonymous said...

Was unable to pick up the feed from nb last night so I tuned into ff and Rob Hart. What a refreshing change to hear an unbiased call.

Dan O'Connor said...

Hopefully it was equally refreshing for you to blast a broadcaster without attaching your name to your remark.

Anonymous said...

lol good for you Dan. Rob Hart is as equally biased when it comes to the Bombers. Can't stand to listen to him; but its all in the preference of your team.

Ed said...

What broadcaster isn't biased towards the home team ? pull your head out of your __ anon # 1.

Ed said...

re Anon # 1 - My guess is you've never listened to Rod Peterson when he did the Pat's or Jon Keen when he was in Swift, now that was some real old fashioned biased announcing.

Anonymous said...

Hey does anyone know if McNulty gets anything for pushing the linesman around? That wasn't cool.

Anonymous said...

We should expect a broadcaster to be supportive of his team as it is better than the broadcaster trying so hard to be unbiased that it sounded like he was favouring the opposition--remember 10-12 years ago?
Nothing shows on the scoresheet for McNulting pushing the linesman after the fight, but it was noted by 1,000 fans.
Good for Birch for keeping his cool and staying on his side of the blue line. We cannot afford to lose a goaltender to suspension.