The Western Hockey League handed down two suspensions to the Moose Jaw Warriors on Monday for two separate incidents in the home opener on Friday evening against the Swift Current Broncos.
Warriors’ defenceman Joel Edmundson was suspended two games for a fighting major and a game misconduct. He has already served one game and has one to left to serve.
Edmundson received a two-minute roughing penalty, a five-minute fighting major and a game misconduct at 9:42 of the first period.
The incident that occurred happened at centre ice after Colby Cave of the Broncos scored short-handed. Broncos captain Adam Lowry and Warriors forward Sam Fioretti were lined up at the faceoff dot. Before the referee dropped the puck, Lowry continually tried to knock down Fioretti by pushing on his head and neck. Before the puck was dropped, Edmundson came in to fight Lowry.
As Edmundson dropped his gloves and started to throw punches, Lowry did not reciprocate and tried to cover his head and hold onto Edmundson’s jersey until the linesmen broke the two apart. Lowry got a two-minute roughing penalty on the play.
“Joel got the two game suspension because he wasn’t on the ice during the stoppage of play. He came off the bench on a line change and then there was a fight instigated by him before the puck was dropped and by the rule book, that is a suspension,” explained Alan Millar, General Manager of the Warriors. “Joel felt that he needed to deal with the situation where our young centers had some liberties taken on them on the face offs and Joel dealt with the situation.”
Justin Kirsch received a four game suspension for his check from behind hit on Reece Scarlett of the Broncos at 6:34 of the third period. Kirsch also received a game misconduct on the play. He has served one game already and three more remain.
Scarlett was on the ice for about 10 minutes before he was taken off the ice on a secure back board and stretcher.
“There was a injury on the play with the player in a vulnerable position. He pushed him from behind and the player went awkwardly into the boards,” stated Millar. “We figured that it would be in the three or four game range”
As he was being taken off the ice, Scarlett gave thumbs up and later tweeted “Thanks for all the support. I am doing fine. Nothing seriously wrong. Just beyond stiff and sore.”
“We are thankful that Scarlett is doing fine. It was a scary situation the way he went into the boards and the way he went off the ice, so we are pleased that there is no serious injury there,” said Millar. “I think Kirsch made a mistake in the neutral zone and hit a guy in a vulnerable position and went in awkwardly. Kirsch is not that type of player.”
For more on this story, read an upcoming edition of the Times-Herald.