Friday, February 27, 2009

Trail vs. Westside Playoff Preview

For an extensive audio preview of the other three BCHL first round series check out my earlier post. Now to get you pumped up for Friday night's first game between Trail and Westside here's the audio montage I'll play to open tonight's broadcast:

AM Ford Trail Smoke Eaters Hockey Playoff Intro 2009

Click here to download

I've got a Smokies highlights video built and ready to upload, but that will get on the site later in the weekend.

The Smoke Eaters had a great first half of the season. They were in first place for a time, they were ranked nationally (as high as 11th) and they were winning in exciting, entertaining fashion. They played a hard working, physical, never give up style that caught some teams off guard and impressed fans and foes alike.

That was then, this is now.

The Smokies only have three wins since new year's eve. They lost ten straight games to close out the regular season. Scoring has dried up, the young defensemen are making mistakes now they didn't make in October, and the swagger that helped defined this awesome group of kids took a pretty big hit. Losing breeds losing. The longer you go on a bad streak the harder it is to break out of it. You see that a team loses ten straight games and you'd think they were getting worked over. That's not the case. Trail has been in most if not all of the games they've lost over this streak. They're just finding ways to lose instead of finding ways to win.

But the regular season is over. The slate is clean. It doesn't matter if you have 50 wins or 10 as long as you're in the dance. How many people expected the Edmonton Oilers to beat the Detroit Red Wings in 2006? Who thought the Carolina Hurricanes would win the Stanley Cup that season? How many times were the Ottawa Senators poised for glory after a great regular season only to fall flat on their faces? The playoffs are a whole new ball game. It's a cliche, but it's the truth.

If the Trail Smoke Eaters can use this new season as a new beginning we could be in for something special. There isn't a single team in the Interior Conference Trail doesn't have a convincing win over. There's nobody in this conference they can't beat. I know it, the coaches know it, the fans know it... do the players believe it? If they do and they can get their swagger back, watch out! This team could surprise you.

However, one coach who wouldn't be surprised is apparently Mark Howell. I had a chance to chat with the Warriors bench boss on Overtime and he knows they are in for a fight. I also talked with Jim Ingram of the Smokies and Westside's broadcaster Kevin Parnell. Here's the audio from Mountain FM's Overtime:

Trail Smoke Eaters Coach Jim Ingram

Click here to download

Westside Warriors Coach Mark Howell

Click here to download

Westside Warriors Broadcaster Kevin Parnell

Click here to download

Here's how the season series breaks down...

Sept 13: Westside 4 at Trail 2
Oct 25: Trail 3 at Westside 5
Nov 22: Westside 4 at Trail 6
Nov 23: Westside 3 at Trail 2
Dec 14: Trail 4 at Westside 5
Feb 5: Trail 3 at Westside 4
Feb 14: Westside 4 at Trail 2
Feb 17: Trail 1 at Westside 4

The Warriors have a 7-1 record against Trail and have outscored the Smokies 33-23 in those games. However, only one of the games was decided by more than 2 goals. In my view the Smokies actually outplayed Westside on the 5th and 17th. Westside certainly earned their victory in the season series, but it was closer than it looks. Every game was a battle. They were all very entertaining and hard fought. Don't expect this to be a walk. Even if one team earns a sweep it won't be an easy one.



Ryan Bulach (2-7-9)
Danny DeKeyser (3-4-7)
JF Boisvert (3-2-5)
Travis St. Denis (3-1-4)
Paul Mailey (2-2-4)
Brandon Clark (2-2-4)
Patirck Raley (0-4-4)
Brett Corcoran (0-3-3)
Justin Brown (2-0-2)
Sean Nugent (1-1-2)
Nick Sandor (1-1-2)
Patrik Martin (0-2-2)
Adam Gummer (0-2-2)
Riley Loyst (1-0-1)
Scott Jacklin (0-1-1)
Jadon Porterfield (0-1-1)
Graeme Strukoff (0-1-1)
Jayson Reardon (0-1-1)


Ron Kelly (4-8-12)
Ron Bailey (6-5-11)
Corey Pritz (3-6-9)
Jordan Gange (5-2-7)
Vince Mihalek (3-4-7)
Chad Gehon (2-5-7)
Kyle Singleton (3-3-6)
Garrett Watson (2-4-6)
Justin Schultz (2-3-5)
Brad Plumton (1-4-5)
Alex Grieve (2-2-4)
Joel Woznikozki (0-4-4)
Brendan Ellis (0-3-3)
Craig Eisenhut (0-3-3)
Grayson Downing (1-1-2)
Cam Reid (0-2-2)
Tyler Krause (1-0-1)


Paul Barclay (TRA) 0-5, 3.80GAA, 0.886%
Marco Raimondo (TRA) 1-2, 3.82GAA, 0.882%
Kevin Jebson (WES) 4-1, 3.22GAA, 0.887%
Devon Murtagh (WES) 2-0, 2.50GAA, 0.898%



Brown-St. Denis-Boisvert


Ross (AP)

Scratches: Olson (AP), Reardon, Gummer, Legassic, Raimondo (all injured)

Affiliate Players: Sam Olson from the Grand Forks Border Bruins, Alex Ross from Kootenay Major Midget





Scratches: Gagne, Miller, Krause


You can hear the broadcast on Mountain FM with AM Ford Trail Smoke Eaters Hockey at 6:45pm. We're available on FM at 104.1 in Trail, 99.3 in Castlegar, 103.5 in Nelson and 96.7 in Grand Forks. The game is also available on BCHL PPV with the Westside broadcast and in the BCHL Fanzone with both home and road feeds.

No comments: