The Swift Current Broncos won the goaltending and special teams battles to defeat the visiting Brandon Wheat Kings on Sunday.
Overage goaltender Riley Lamb made 47 saves in his Broncos debut to lead the Broncos to a 4-2 win as the Broncos scored twice on three power play opportunities.
“Yeah it was definitely a game to remember for sure, the first game with the Swift Current Broncos,” said Lamb. “It was good. I think I played pretty well, but the guys in front of me definitely helped me out. They let me see a lot of shots. They let me just eat the pucks from the outside, which was good. It was just a good team win.”
The Broncos led 2-1 after one period after firing 12 shots on goal. Ian Briscoe notched his first goal as a Bronco with a quick shot off a face-off win. Brandon took advantage of a defensive breakdown to tie the game on a Zach Wyntinck goal. The Broncos regained the lead when Ethan O’Rourke tapped home a power play centering feed from Briscoe with 2:29 left in the period.
Luka Burzan tied the game midway through the second period with a power play goal. Alex Moar put the Broncos back in front with a seeing-eye shot that found the top corner 1:59 later.
Captain Tanner Nagel added a third-period backhand goal and Lamb made another 16 saves in the final frame to secure the win.
Lamb had joined the Broncos earlier in the week after they dealt starter Joel Hofer to Portland in exchange for six draft picks over the next three years.
“I was just trying to stay calm and hopefully get a win. Just trying not to let too many in. Honestly, I was kind of nervous coming in. Making the jump back to the Major Junior level is tough. I just came in and tried my best.”
It may have been his first game with the Broncos, but Lamb appeared in 73 WHL games with the Red Deer Rebels over the past two seasons.
“I think it’s huge,” he said of his WHL experience. “I think the first five minutes got me back up to pace and then after that it was just like deja vu, just back in the league. Knowing the pace and what guys are going to do helped out a lot.”
Lamb had played in 26 Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League games with Weyburn this season before being traded to the Yorkton Terriers where he suited up for three games before jumping back to the WHL with the Broncos.
“Yorkton has a really good squad and it was kind of a tough decision to leave there for here,” said the Rivers, MB native. “At the end of the day you want to play at the highest level possible. Everyone here wants to make a career out of it. It’s just playing at the highest level possible to try and get to the next level, whether that’s school or semi-pro, or anything like it always helps playing at the highest level.”
Ethan Kruger took the loss with 20 saves to fall to 4–6-1-1.
The Broncos improved to 9-30-2-1, while Brandon fell to Brandon 17-18-3-3.
The Broncos will play their sixth consecutive home game on Tuesday when they host the Kootenay Ice.