The Winnipeg ICE are moving on to the second round of the Western Hockey League playoffs.
Thanks to their fourth-straight postseason win, the ICE have swept the Medicine Hat Tigers and will wait for the other Eastern Conference playoff series to conclude before learning their second round opponent.
The Winnipeg ICE are off to the second round of the WHL playoffs following a 4-0 sweep of the Medicine Hat Tigers.
— Carter Brooks (@CBrooksie84) April 6, 2023
Taking Wednesday evening’s road game by a 3-2 count, the ICE got goals from Matthew Savoie, Owen Pederson and Ty Nash – whose third period marker stood as the winner in the narrow one-goal game from Co-Op Place in Alberta.
Goaltender Daniel Hauser turned aside 30 of the 32 shots he faced, improving his playoff record to 4-0 on the year, while owning a .925 save percentage and a 2.25 goals against average over the first round. Once again, the ICE were heavily outshot, this time to the tune of 11 total shots through 60 minutes of work. But it was goaltending that made the difference.
Still missing offensive star and 2023 project Top-10 NHL Draft pick Zach Benson, Winnipeg was unable to convert on any of its four power play chances, while Medicine Hat picked up a single goal on one of its two man advantages.
Coming off a 7-2 blowout Game 3 win on Tuesday, the ICE finished the series with 20 total goals for, while giving up nine in the four games. Savoie, who opened the scoring just 1:14 into Wednesday’s game, leads the team with nine playoff points, while Ben Zloty (eight assists) and Connor McClendon (seven points) trail closely behind.
Joining the ICE with opening round sweeps were the Moose Jaw Warriors (4-0 over the Lethbridge Hurricanes) and the Seattle Thunderbirds (4-0 over the Kelowna Rockets). Both Kamloops and Portland hold 3-0 series leads over their first round opponents. The second round is expected to get underway next week.