Kodiaks tame Mustangs in Game 1
Camrose Kodiaks forward Carson Welke celebrates his first period shorthanded goal on Calgary Mustangs goalie Ashton Abel in Game 1 of their Alberta Junior Hockey league South Division quarter-final. Josh Aldrich/Camrose Canadian
Kodiaks 5, Mustangs 1
The Camrose Kodiaks penalty kill proved more than deadly in their series lid lifter with the Calgary Mustangs.
The Kodiaks killed six of seven penalties and added a short-handed goal to win Game 1 of their Alberta Junior Hockey League South Division quarter-final 5-1 in Camrose on Thursday night.
Carson Welke opened up the scoring for the Kodiaks at 10:54 of the first period as he cleaned up a rebound off his twin brother McKenzie's short-handed breakaway.
The home team rolled from there.
Kyler Kupka added another goal for Camrose less than two minutes later as they swarmed Mustangs goalie Ashton Abel, firing 18 shots his way in the opening frame.
The game threatened to swing back in the Mustangs' favour after Carson Welke was given a five-minute major and a game misconduct for kneeing Yuri Chernichko at 8:31 of the second frame. The Mustangs scored 23 seconds into their extended power play, but the Kodiaks bounced right back and controlled the remainder of the advantage. Camrose out chanced Calgary for the final 4:37, including two Grade A scoring chances by Kyler Kupka.
Kodiaks captain Ryan Hartman restored the two-goal lead at 18:41, burying a snap shot from the top of the slot at 18:41 of the second.
Nic Correale delivered the dagger 5:30 into the third period on the Kodiaks' first man advantage of the game, putting home a rebound off of a Hartman point shot, and Kupka hammered home the final nail on the Kodiaks' second power play at six and a half minutes later.
The Kodiaks finished 2-for-2 on the power play.
Brock Bremer had three assists for Camrose while Hartman and Correale both had assists for two-point nights. Luke Lush was solid in net for Camrose, making 27 saves for the win.
Abel played well in his playoff debut as he did not have a chance on the five goals against and finished with 37 saves.
Game 2 goes Friday night in Camrose at 7 p.m. Game 3 is set for Calgary on Sunday at 7:30 p.m. Game 4, if needed, will be in Calgary at 7:30 p.m. and Game 5 in Camrose on Wednesday at 7 p.m.