Provided by Arch Ecker and the Wenatchee Wild Hockey Club
(Wenatchee, WA)…In a year that has been filled with franchise firsts and records, the Wenatchee Wild saw a couple of new twists on Saturday night as the Wild stormed to a 9-1 win over the Surrey Eagles with over 3,000 fans in the building on “Pucks and Paws Night”.
Wild captain Tyler Rockwell ended Wenatchee’s 0-for-16 power play drought when he connected on a blast from the point at 13:39 of the first period. Colin Burston put back the rebound of a Dakota Raabe shot at 16:33 and the Wild led 2-0 after 1, outshooting Surrey 16-3. In the second period, AJ Vanderbeck knocked in the rebound of a Jasper Weatherby shot at 2:59 to make it 3-0, then swatted home another shot, high blocker side at 13:59 to make it 4-0. Colin Burston finished off a nice left wing rush with Troy Conzo by picking the same high blocker side on a power play for a 5-0 lead after 2 periods, with Wenatchee outshooting Surrey 21-4 in the middle frame.
In the third period, Burston completed his hat trick, his second of the year, as he snapped home a shot from the left circle at the :59 second mark, assisted by Matt Baker and Slava Demin. The Wild found themselves down on a 5-on-3 penalty kill, and on the faceoff flicked it ahead creating a 2-on-1 rush with Baker and Burston, and as Burston swept home the rebound for what would have been his fourth goal, the play was ruled “no-goal” by the official who declared a Wild player was in the crease. The Eagles managed to score on the 5-on-3 power play, a deflected shot from the point, ending a stretch of over 165 minutes without a goal. For the Wild, it ended a string of 17 unanswered goals. Anthony Yamnitsky, though, set a new franchise mark for shutout time, going 181:57 between goals allowed, eclipsing the mark of 180:43 established by Devin Cooley just weeks ago. Two minutes later, Jasper Weatherby rammed home his second goal of the weekend at 6:44, ripped through the five-hole from the right circle. At 12:52, Burston became just the fourth Wild player to score four goals in a game as he tucked a backhand squeaker through the goalie’s pads for an 8-1 Wild lead. Then, at 14:10, AJ Vanderbeck completed a hat trick and he ripped a heavy shot from the left circle on the power play, set up by Alex Bates for the 9-1 final margin. It’s the first time the Wild have ever had two hat tricks on the same night. 16 of the Wild’s 18 skaters earned a point on the night, and Wenatchee outshot Surrey 62-11.
Wenatchee (38-8-4-0) kicks off a three-game weekend with a visit to Vernon (27-15-5-4) on Friday, followed by stops in Penticton on Saturday, and Trail on Sunday. All Wild games are aired live locally on Sunny FM 93.9 and available online with pay-per-view at HockeyTV.com. Be sure to also catch Wild hockey on Thursday Night’s on the NCWLIFE Channel with “Hockey Night” beginning with Call of the Wild at 8 p.m. followed by a Wild game taped at the Town Toyota Center.