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Saad, Carruth through to second round in CHL playoffs

Monday, 04.02.2012 / 1:04 PM
By Emerald Gao - chicagoblackhawks.com / The Blackhawks Blog
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Saad, Carruth through to second round in CHL playoffs
Brandon Saad, 2011 second-round draft pick, led the Saginaw Spirit with 12 points (6G, 6A) in six first-round appearances.

One round is in the books, and two Blackhawks representatives are left in the hunt for hardware: Mac Carruth in the Western Hockey League and Brandon Saad in the Ontario Hockey League.

OHL

Saginaw passed a stern first-round test against Sarnia, besting the Sting in a six-game series. The Spirit will face the London Knights in the second round of the OHL playoffs, hosting Game 2 on April 8. The Knights—who count Dave Bolland and Patrick Kane among their alumni—finished the regular season with the OHL’s best record (49-18-0-1) and swept their series against Windsor in the first round.

  • Brandon Saad: The Spirit captain led by example, pacing the team with six goals, six helpers and a +7 plus/minus rating in six games. Saad dropped four points (2G, 2A) in Saginaw’s 5-2 victory over Sarnia in Game 5, including the game-winning goal and an empty-netter to seal the victory.
  • Ludvig Rensfeldt: Sarnia's Swedish winger was held to just one assist in the final two games, but finished with five points (2G, 3A) in six appearances.
WHL

Mac Carruth and the Portland Winterhawks secured a second-round matchup against the second-ranked Kamloops Blazers by way of a 4-0 sweep of Kelowna. Portland will host Games 1 and 2 on April 6-7.

  • Mac Carruth started all four games for the Winterhawks and recorded one shutout, a 2.25 goals-against average and a .926 save percentage.

QMJHL

With Victoriaville already eliminated—and 2011 first-round draft pick Phillip Danault joining Rockford last week—Acadie-Bathurst attempted to battle back from a 3-1 series deficit against Chicoutimi. The Titan extended their stay in the playoffs with a 3-2 overtime victory in Game 5 but fell 4-3 in Game 6, again in the extra frame. The matchup against the Saguenéens featured three overtime games and was the only first-round series that didn’t end in a sweep.

  • Mirko Hoefflin finished the series with four points (2G, 2A) in six games. Hoefflin scored the game-tying goal in Game 6 to force overtime and won 36 of 78 faceoffs in the series.