By Brian Weidler, "Game Time" Prospect Department
The five Blues' prospects -- Jake Allen, Mark Cundari, Alex Pietrangelo, Ian Schultz and Tyler Shattock -- who opened this week in their respective league playoffs, are still battling as the weekend approaches.
In the OHL, Pietrangelo and the Barrie Colts have won the Eastern Conference championship with a 4-2 victory over the Mississauga St. Michaels Majors on Wednesday, and await the winner of the Windsor-Kitchener series in the Western Conference.
Cundari (at left) and Windsor stayed alive by shutting out Kitchener 3-0 on Thursday. The win was Windsor's second straight after losing the first three games of the series to the Rangers. Game Six is tonight in Kitchener.
Pietrangelo's line: 13 GP, 2-11-13, plus-7, 0 PM, 1 PP, 0 SH, 0 GW.
Cundari's line: 13 GP, 1-11-12, plus-16, 32 PM, 1 PP, 0 SH, 0 GW.
In the "Q," Allen (at right) and les Voltigeurs de Drummondville face elimination tonight on home ice unless they can pull out a victory over the Moncton (NB) Wildcats. The 'Cats have outscored Drummondville 15-7 in the series thus far, with "Jake The Snake" having surrendered 14 of the 15 goals (1 ENG) in 249 minutes of playing time.
After playing brilliantly in a four-game sweep of Lewiston in the first round (1.50 GAA, 93.2% save pecentage), Allen and les Voltigeurs have come back down to earth somewhat. In the first round, and in a 4-1 second-round series win over Rimouski, Drummondville's defense was allowing only 22 shots against Allen per 60 minutes played; in the four games of the third round played to date, Allen has seen 33.73 shots per 60 minutes from Wildcat sticks.
Allen's line: 13 GP, 781:23, 31 GA, 318 SA, 1 SO, 9-4-0, 2.38, 90.3%.
Out West, Schultz and Shattock -- and the rest of their Calgary Hitmen teammates -- can advance to the WHL Championship for the second consecutive season against the eventual winner of the Vancouver/Tri-City series, if they can close out the Brandon Wheat Kings tonight at the Pengrowth Saddledome.
After tough conference quarterfinal (4-3 vs Moose Jaw) and semifinal (4-2 vs. Medicine Hat) series, and after dropping Game One of the Eastern Conference final 4-2 to Brandon at the Saddledome, the Hitmen have won three straight to put the Wheat Kings on the brink.
Shattock (at left) made the trip to Brandon with the Hitmen, but sat out the last two games after taking a hit from behind from Brandon's Scott Glennie in OT of Game Two earlier this week. Schultz, meanwhile, has been chipping in offensively for the Hitmen during the two-game Eastern swing into Brandon, and staying out of the penalty box for the most part.
Schultz' line: 17 GP, 7-4-11, minus-1, 17 PM, 4 PP, 0 SH, 1 GW.
Shattock's line: 15 GP, 5-10-15, plus-4, 20 PM, 1 PP, 0 SH, 1 GW.