After his poor rookie campaign, there was almost zero buzz surrounding the forward from Winnipeg, Manitoba. Two short months have changed that. The word is out, and it would be more surprising now if Kolesar weren’t a high-round selection in the 2015 NHL Draft.
Bill Swartz sits down with Seattle Thunderbirds Head Coach Steve Konowalchuk and Seahawk TE Luke Willson to discuss this weeks upcoming games.
Despite a late push from Keegan Kolesar, the Eastern Conference squad held on for a 5-3 road victory over Seattle. Zach Fischer provided a goal and an assist to lead Medicine Hat, while points leader Trevor Cox notched his 33rd assist, second-best in the Western Hockey League.
Friday’s victory came on the heels of a dominant 4-1 win over Spokane Sunday when the team opened a 2-0 lead. Suddenly, Seattle (12-12-2-2) has won three of its last four after losing five of six.
Seattle’s 6-foot-2 leading scorer entered Friday’s contest with 12 goals and 10 assists through 27 games. He now has 13 goals and 11 assists for a six-point advantage over the Thunderbirds’ next leading scorer.
Theodore, 19, has played in seven games since returning last month. He’s expected back in the lineup this weekend after missing the past two games with the flu. His return brings scoring stability and leadership in an inexperienced Thunderbirds squad in need.
Bill Swartz sits down with Seattle Thunderbirds Head Coach Steve Konowalchuk and Defenseman Jared Hauf to discuss this weeks upcoming games.
Khaira, 16, has played in 21 games through the first two months of his debut WHL season. Seattle head coach Steve Konowalchuk has seen the 6-foot-3, 213-pound defender from Surrey, B.C. progress in his first season above the Bantam level.
Starting goaltender Taran Kozun provided 20 saves in his return to the Seattle (11-12-2-2) lineup, while Ryan Gropp scored two power-play goals to lead the T-Birds to a victory which helped salvage a three-game weekend.
Yet, despite holding a 80.8 penalty-kill percentage, good for 10th in the Western Hockey League through 25 games, Seattle has allowed four goals in 11 power-play chances over its last two games. An uncommon lapse for a team normally sound.
Seattle held a two-game homestand against division rivals Tri-City and Spokane over three days. It presented an opportunity for the fourth-place Thunderbirds to gain ground in the U.S. Division standings, an opportunity they capitalized on by holding court at home with two big wins.
Playing without 40 percent of their offense Friday, the Thunderbirds managed to win their sixth consecutive game on the backs of first-year players. Donovan Neuls and Nolan Volcan scored Seattle’s two goals and fellow rookies Lane Pederson, Nick Holowko and Turner Ottenbreit had key contributions in the 3-2 shootout win over Tri-City.
The Seattle Thunderbirds won their fourth consecutive game with a 4-2 defeat over Everett, their U.S. Division rival in front of 6,219 spectators at the ShoWare Center Tuesday. Keegan Kolesar scored two goals and reserve goaltender Danny Mumaugh had 28 saves in just his sixth start of the season.
The Thunderbirds played their final two home games of the first half of their 2014-15 season December 13 and 16 before heading on a 10-day holiday break. Saturday brought a 2-1 defeat at the hands of hated U.S. Division-rival Portland, while Tuesday brought a thrilling 5-4 win over Victoria.
With nearly 6,000 fans checking out the action, the Thunderbirds split a weekend double-header at the ShoWare Center. First, Seattle built an early lead and held on for a divisional win over Tri-City Friday night, then Saturday the team dropped a 5-3 contest to Medicine Hat of the Eastern Conference.
Looking to rebound from a flat effort the previous night against Kootenay, the Thunderbirds brought the energy from the opening face-off against U.S. Division rival Spokane. Seattle opened a 2-0 first-period lead against the number two team in the standings, before cruising to a 4-1 victory Sunday.
Looking to build off an important and emotional victory over Everett on Friday night, the Thunderbirds opened a four-game homestand in disappointing fashion Saturday. A flat Seattle squad playing without top scorers Shea Theodore and Mathew Barzal were thoroughly out-played by Sam Reinhart and the Kootenay Ice of the Eastern Conference. Reinhart, last summer’s No. 2 overall pick by the Buffalo Sabres, had a goal and an assist in his 10th game with the Ice. He has 22 points in that span and the Ice are 8-2.