Wranglers Playoff Game Day: Must win match up in possible elimination game

Photo credit:Mike Zitek/Coachella Valley Firebirds
Paige Siewert
11 months ago
It’s do or die time for the Calgary Wranglers. They enter game four of a best of five series against the Coachella Valley Firebirds on Wednesday night and they do not have the edge in the series they would’ve liked to have after playing a triple overtime game on Monday night. They trail two games to one and have to force a game five to keep their Calder Cup hopes alive. Can they beat Joey Daccord though?

Projected lineups

Dryden Hunt – Ben Jones – Matthew Phillips
Jakob Pelletier – Cole Schwindt – Walker Duehr
Brett Sutter – Clark Bishop – Kevin Rooney
Emilio Pettersen – Connor Zary – Adam Klapka
Ilya Solovyov – Nick DeSimone
Jeremie Poirier – Colton Poolman
Kristians Rubins – Josh Brook 
Dustin Wolf
Coachella Valley 
Kole Lind – Alexander True – Max McCormick
Jeremy McKenna – Cameron Hughes – Luke Henman 
Carsen Twarynski – Ville Petman – Austin Poganski 
David Goyette – Shane Wright – Nick Pastujov
Ryker Evans – Matt Tennyson 
Eddie Wittchow – Jimmy Schuldt
Gustav Olofsson – Brogan Rafferty 
Joey Daccord 

Post-season leaders

Matthew Phillips – 7GP, 1G, 6A
Jeremie Poirier – 7GP, 1G, 6A
Jakob Pelletier – 7GP, 4G, 2A
Coachella Valley 
Kole Lind – 11GP, 7G, 9A
Max McCormick – 11GP, 7G, 8A
Ryker Evans – 11GP, 2G, 10A

Notes and expectations 

Joey Daccord has gone the entire way through this series and the ones before between the pipes for Coachella Valley. His standout performance took place in game three against Calgary when he stopped 60/62 shots. In the first overtime period, he stopped all 19 of the Wranglers’ opportunities. Wolf was officially named the AHL goaltender of the year, but it appears to be some competition on the other end of the rink. A competition that boiled down to a goalie battle last game and very well could this game as well.
Wranglers head coach Mitch Love was rolling with his best players when they were in the heat of the overtime, double overtime and triple overtime battles. Emilio Pettersen in particular stood out as a player missing from these big game moments. There is a chance he is swapped out from the lineup and replaced with one of their regular forwards like Mitch McLain. Adam Klapka was also uncharacteristically absent from the ice but with four goals in the playoffs, it really isn’t their best interest to pull him from the lineup.
Both the Firebirds and Wranglers are battling for the chance at the Western Conference Finals but are also battling for the bragging rights for the best new AHL team of the season. This really is a match of this year’s best and by the end of the week, one of them will move on and the other will move out and start their offseason. 
You can catch what we hope to not be the last game of the Wranglers’ 2023 playoff run on Wednesday night. Game four is set to start at 8:00 p.m. MT. You can catch the radio broadcast on the Fan960 or stream the game on AHL.tv for a fee. Multiple FlamesNation members will also have game updates for you via Twitter. 

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