September 23, 2012
No. 1 star: Adam Lowry, Swift Current Broncos (WHL)
Lowry notched a hat trick in his first home game as the Broncos' captain, leading Swift Current to a bounce-back 7-1 win over the Moose Jaw Warriors. The Broncos scored first in the eighth minute and the 19-year-old Lowry quickly built off that with a short-handed unassisted goal a mere 1:50 later. Lowry finished off a tic-tac-toe passing play with Coda Gordon (1G-2A, +2) and Brycen Martin in the second period, then completed his hatty by finding a crease in the Warriors' coverage and then wiring in a pass from Gordon. Finnish netminder Eetu Laurikainen stopped 27-of-28 shots for his first Western League win.
The Everett Silvertips had the longest wait for their season opener, but Jacobs (2G-3A, +4) and the Prince George Cougars made them look not ready for prime time with a 6-0 road win. The Buffalo Sabres pick, returning to the state where he spent three seasons with the Seattle Thunderbirds, scored his first of the night and first as a Cougar on a first-period penalty shot. Then his night just got better, with assists on tallies by linemates Alex Forsberg and Chase Witala to help put away the 'Tips early. The game was over after Jacobs scored in the final minute of Period 2.
No. 3 star: Nic Petan, Portland Winterhawks (WHL)
The Petan-Oliver Bjorkstrand tandem tallied a combined seven points as the 17-year-olds led the Winterhawks to a 6-2 win over Seattle. Petan (1G-3A, +4) set up pivotal goals late in each of the first two periods, keeping frustration at bay for Portland before it broke the game open in the third. The Delta, B.C., native then scored 2:01 into the third to deflate the Thunderbirds, courtesy of a setup by Bjorkstrand (2G-1A).
Honourable mention: Cameron Brace, Owen Sound Attack (OHL)
See, there was a reason for omitting Brace in favour of one of his teammates on Thursday. Brace (1G-2A, +3) had his second consecutive three-point to lead the Attack to a 5-2 win over the Saginaw Spirit. Brace's line with Buffalo Sabres-drafted centre Daniel Catenacci (1G-1A) and defenceman-turned-left wing Kyle Hope set the pace for the Attack; Brace set up Hope for the opening goal and the tallied himself to open a two-goal margin in the second period.
Honourable mention: Mitch Holmberg, Spokane Chiefs (WHL)
Holmberg (1G-2A) had three points in exactly 10 minutes of elapsed game time to help an uneven Spokane team beat Tri-City 5-2. The Chiefs didn't have a full 60-minute effort. However, Holmberg broke the goose egg midway through the secod period by centring to Todd Fiddler for the tally. Holmberg also assisted on a Liam Stewart (1G-1A) power-play tally and scored himself late in the period.
Potent notables — Prince Albert Raiders draft-year defenceman Josh Morrisey had a three-assist night; so did Brandon's Ryan Pulock ... In the OHL, Boston Bruins first-rounder Malcolm Subban stopped 33-of-35 shots and all three shootout attempts to help Belleville nip Plymouth ... The Peterborough Petes' Michael Giugovaz (39 saves) was credited with his first major junior win ... In the QMJHL, Sven Andrighetto scored both Rouyn-Noranda goals (with assists from Jean-Sébastien Dea) in a win over Victoriaville.
Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Contact him at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet.