Buzzing The Net

  • Jesse Gabrielle natural hat trick helps Wheat Kings sweep Regina: Saturday's QMJHL and WHL 3 Stars

    Neate Sager at Buzzing The Net10 hrs ago

    No. 1 star: Jesse Gabrielle, Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL)

    The Wheaties sophomore had a natural hat trick over the second and third period to help East Division favourite Brandon peel away from Regina for a 6-1 road win. It was a 1-0 contest until the final four minutes of the second period, when the 17-year-old Gabrielle (3G, +2) took a feed from Peter Quenneville (2A, +2) and went in to score. In the final minute of the period, Gabrielle bulled to the net and made a finishing move in tight to push Brandon out to a 3-0 lead after 40.

    Linemate Nolan Patrick (2A, +2) made sure Gabrielle completed his first Western Hockey League hat trick in the third, as they connected on a power-play goal 1:15 into the frame. 

    No. 2 star: Carter Hart, Everett Silvertips (WHL)

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  • Jay Merkley makes bank for Broncos on Dub's opening night: Friday's QMJHL and WHL 3 Stars

    Neate Sager at Buzzing The Net1 day ago

    No. 1 star: Jay Merkley, Swift Current Broncos (WHL)

    The former No. 3 overall pick kicked off his 19-year-old season in fine fashion, with a hat trick plus an apple in the Broncos' 6-0 stampeding of the Moose Jaw Warriors. Swift Current got out to a two-goal lead thanks to tallies from two players making their Western League debuts (Dub-utantes?), as Andreas Schumacher and Tyler Steenbergen scored in the contest's first 30 minutes.

    Merkley, who broke out with a 34-goal campaign in 2014, converted a Jake DeBrusk feed late in the second. He struck again for a short-handed goal 36 seconds in the third to break what remained of Moose Jaw's spirit. The rest of the night was cake, as Merkley got an assist and then topped off his trick with more than 6 1/2 minutes to spare.

    Landon Bow, with 34 saves, got his second career shutout.

    No. 2 star: Marvin Cüpper, Shawinigan Cataractes (QMJHL)

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  • OHL, following Terry Trafford tragedy, starting a mental health program — report

    Neate Sager at Buzzing The Net2 days ago

    A few seasons back, the OHL went on a P.R. offensive to make the point to players that concealing a brain injury was not toughness personified, but sheer foolhardiness. While not literally analogous, given the stigma about mental illness that is slowly being eroded, that still applies when trying to address mental illness among its 16- through 20-year-old players.

    The OHL, following the suicide of Terry Trafford in March, absolutely, positively could not begin the season without some acknowledgement that it intends on preventing a similar loss of so much human potential. On Friday, the Guelph Mercury reported the league is a couple weeks away from revealing a "league-wide mental health program for its players and staff." 

    From Tony Saxon (@SaxonOnTheStorm):

    Dr. Neil Widmeyer, who has been the Guelph Storm's sports psychologist for 16 years, has seen a draft of the new program and said it is a big step forward.

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