Broncos score seven goals to open second round of playoffs

The Swift Current Broncos made a statement with a 7-2 win over the host Moose Jaw Warriors to open the second round of the Western Hockey League playoffs.

Josh Filmon and Brady Birnie both scored twice for the Broncos to open the best-of-seven series.

The Broncos scored goals 38 seconds apart in the first period to take a 2–0 lead. Birnie opened the scoring with his first playoff goal when he found a loose puck at the top of the crease and tucked it home. The Broncos quickly doubled the lead when Josh Filmon found a bouncing puck in the slot and whacked it into the top corner to score for a fourth straight game. The Warriors had a pair of late power plays in the period as they finished with a 15-13 advantage on the shot clock.

Both teams scored twice in the second period, beginning with a pair of Broncos goals to make it 4-0. Filmon scored his second of the game with a power play goal when he fired a puck off the mask of Jackson Unger and in. Birnie added his second goal when he got behind the Warriors and converted the Broncos fourth goal of the game in 32:57. The Warriors responded with a late power play goal from Brayden Yager and then Jagger Firkus tipped home his third goal of the playoffs with 12 seconds remaining in the middle stanza.

The Broncos ended any comeback hopes in the third period with three unanswered goals, beginning with a Connor Hvidston goal as he knocked home a rebound off a shot that hit the crossbar. Mathew Ward notched his first goal of the playoff minutes later with a top-corner wrist shot and then rookie Ty Coupland scored on the breakaway to close the scoring.

Reid Dyck was outstanding in goal once again with 33 saves for the Broncos. Unger was chased after allowing six goals on 24 shots. Dimitri Fortin made seven saves on eight shots over 12:42.

Game two will be Saturday in Moose Jaw.

Bronco Bits: Dyck is now 5-0 with a 2.01 goals against average and a .937 save percentage in his first WHL playoff run. Filmon leads the Broncos with five playoff goals, Ward leads the team with seven assists, Clarke Caswell and Ward each have eight points. The Broncos finished one-for-two on the power play and lead the WHL at 56.3 percent over five games. Both teams were unbeaten in the playoffs after opening-round sweeps of the Lethbridge Hurricanes and Brandon Wheat Kings.