Hands of Stone

SCOTT FISHER -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 8:14 AM ET

The 'Dome has been anything but home sweet home for Ryan Stone.

The Calgary product hasn't been able to fill the net here with the regularity to which he's accustomed.

"I usually don't have the best games here," said Stone, who was held off the scoresheet in Brandon's 3-2 OT win over the Hitmen Sunday. "But I get to see all my family members so that's a positive."

The 19-year-old centre has just one goal and a trio of helpers in five career visits to the 'Dome.

Which doesn't quite jive with the rest of his numbers. The Pittsburgh Penguins prospect has 18 goals and sits tied for fifth in the WHL with 59 points. The 6-ft. 1-in., 203-pounder has also ran up more than 100 PIMs for the fourth consecutive year.

Wheaties captain Tim Konsorada, who scored twice Sunday, including the OT winner, said Stone's worth can't be measured by stats alone.

"He brings so much heart and character to the team," Konsorada said. "He's a guy you always want on your team. He never gives up, he's always working his butt off and you can always count on him."

Stone's proven he's able to deal with adversity, too. First, there was the injury suffered by younger brother, Colin, who will miss the entire season with Swift Current due to a severe concussion suffered in last year's playoffs. Then came the crushing blow of being one of the final players cut by the junior national team.

"At the time, it was really disappointing," Stone said. "Right now, I try not to even think about it. I want to show that I should have been there. But they could have taken whoever and still would have won gold. They had a great team."

The Wheat Kings sit 11 points back of Saskatoon in the battle for top spot in the East Division. And although their recent 1-3 road trip through Alberta didn't help, the Wheaties hope a return to Manitoba will push them over the top.

"It's been a rough trip," Stone said. "We're trying to catch Saskatoon and the only way we can do that is if we win a bunch of games."

But Stone will have to wait just a bit longer before crawling into his own bed. Tomorrow's game against the Hitmen will be played at Winnipeg's MTC Centre. This week's bizarre schedule will see the Brandon also host the Hitmen Friday, the third straight game the teams will face off.

"Usually, the rivalries are between teams that are (geographically) closer," Stone said. "But playing three games in a row against the same team, you're going to learn to hate them."


Videos

Photos