Central Division opens WHL 2020-21 regular season

Joe Arntsen (left) appeared in 41 games with the Lethbridge Hurricanes last season. STEVEN MAH/SOUTHWEST BOOSTER FILE PHOTO

The Western Hockey League 2020-21 regular season got underway for the Central Division teams over the weekend. Four of the five Alberta teams were in action as they split off for home-and-home series on Friday and Saturday.

It was a rough opening weekend for the Lethbridge Hurricanes as they lost 7-1 and 7-2 to the Edmonton Oil Kings. Dinsmore’s Joe Arntsen picked up an assist on the Hurricanes second goal on Saturday in their home opener. The 6’3’’ blueliner had three points, 22 penalty minutes and a plus-four rating in 41 games during his rookie season in 2019-20.

The other Central Division action saw the Medicine Hat Tigers defeat the host Red Deer Rebels 5-4 in overtime and then take the rematch 7-2 back in Medicine Hat.

Swift Current’s Chase Coward is one of three goaltenders with the Rebels this season. He played last season with the Moose Jaw U18 AAA Warriors and finished with a 2.08 goals against average and a .930 save percentage. Coward also made two appearances for the Rebels last season.

Shaunavon’s Kalan Lind is also with the Rebels as an underage player this season. Lind was the sixth overall pick in the 2020 WHL Bantam Draft. He was leading the Saskatchewan Male U18 AAA Hockey League with 14 points in six games with the Saskatoon Contacts this season.

Next weekend’s games will include the Tigers versus the Oil Kings, while the Rebels will battle the Calgary Hitmen.

The Swift Current Broncos will begin play in the East Division in Regina on March 12.