October 25, 2011
Clean sheets for teen Comrie in WHL
By SCOTT FISHER, QMI Agency
CALGARY - That first doughnut was so good, the kid just had to grab himself another.
The Tri-City Americans scored a measly two goals during last weekend’s two-game trip to Prince George.
But, thanks to rookie goaltender Eric Comrie, those two goals were worth four points in the standings.
Comrie posted back-to-back shutouts for a pair of 1-0 victories over the Cougars.
“It was a lot of fun,” Comrie told the Tri-City Herald.
“I was more worried about the win. I didn’t want them to score and get the momentum. Our team really helped me out a lot all weekend.
“Our PK was outstanding. We limited their shots in the first game, and in the second, we didn’t give them any second chances.
“It was a great team effort.”
It was also a spectacular effort on his part.
The highly touted 16-year-old and younger brother of former Edmonton Oiler player Mike Comrie, stopped a combined 47 shots while picking up his first career WHL goose- eggs.
Americans bench boss Jim Hiller said the youngster showed great composure.
“Prince George is a tough place to get one (win), let alone two,” Hiller told the Tri-City Herald.
“Eric has had an adjustment just like everyone else has. He is trending in the right direction. He had four or five key saves to keep us in the lead both nights.
“We scored in the second both nights, and for 30 minutes, he did his best to keep the door shut.”
Hiller picked up wins No. 100 and 101 on the weekend.
He’s the fastest coach in franchise history to crack the century mark.
Hiller hit 100 in his 157th game (.659 winning percentage).
It took Bob Loucks (103 wins) 207 games to reach the mark, while Don Nachbaur, the Americans’ all-time coaching wins leader (229), got his 100th win in game No. 236.
It’s a good thing for Hiller his rookie ’tender is so hot because he certainly can’t count on the other guy.
Oh wait, that’s not true.
Edmonton product Ty Rimmer is among the league-leaders in all statistical categories.
Rimmer, 19, has a 1.78 goals-against average and a .945 save percentage to go with his 6-2 record.
Trying to figure out which hot hand to stick between the pipes is a problem Hiller would love to have for the remainder of the season.
The Medicine Hat Tigers traded away some offence to shore up the blueline.
The Bengals dealt overage winger Kellan Tochkin to the Prince Albert Raiders for 20-year-old defenceman James Bettauer and a sixth-round 2013 bantam draft pick.
Tochkin had eight assists in 10 games with the Bengals, while Bettauer had five goals and nine points in 15 games with the Raiders.
Home is where the wins are
Playing well on home ice isn’t good enough.
Elite teams usually have a good road record.
But they almost never lose in their own rink.
Regina Pats veteran forward Matt Marantz would like to see his squad improve on its 3-2 home record.
“We want the identity that when you come to the Brandt Centre you’re going to have to bring your best,” Marantz told the Regina Leader Post. “(Teams need to know) we’re going to be a tough team to play against (on home ice). We really want that.”
The Spokane Chiefs (7-0)Saskatoon Blades (5-0) are the only clubs who remain perfect at home.