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Yager, Unger help Team White take win in CHL Top Prospects Game

Yager picks up assist, Unger solid in second half of game as White takes 4-2 win over Team Red
Team White, including Moose Jaw Warriors forward Brayden Yager and goaltender Jackson Unger, took a 4-2 win at the Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game on Wednesday night.

After the kind of showing forward Brayden Yager and goaltender Jackson Unger put together in the Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game on Wednesday night, it’s starting to look like the annual showcase of NHL Draft talent is a good place for the Moose Jaw Warriors.

Yager picked up an assist on his team’s opening goal and Unger was solid in goal in the second half of the game as Team White picked up a 4-2 win over Team Red in Vancouver.

Yager -- who was an assistant captain for Team White -- played alongside Koehn Ziemmer of the Prince George Cougars and Colby Barlow of the Owen Sound Attack, and it didn’t take long for the line to hit the score sheet.

Working on Team White’s first power play, Yager would work his way in on the right wing and find Barlow alone in front of the net, and a quick shot off a rebound would tie the game 1-1 at the 6:25 mark of the first period.

Yager would have a couple of scoring chances through the remainder of the game and would finish with a pair of shots, win six of his 14 faceoffs and cap the night with a minus-one plus-minus.

Unger came into the game at the 11:30 mark of the second period and was all but lights out. He came within 36 seconds of putting up a shutout in his half of the game, but Zach Benson of the Winnipeg Ice would score in the final minute..

Unger capped his night with 21 saves in 28:30 of action, while Scott Ratzlaff of the Seattle Thunderbirds had 24 stops as the game’s starter.

The impressive showing for the two Warriors comes on the heels of a similar performance by a pair of Moose Jaw players in the 2022 Top Prospects Game -- Jagger Firkus scored a highlight-reel goal and Denton Mateychuk picked up an assist while turning in a solid showing on the blueline. Both were later high picks in the 2022 NHL Draft.

The game was tied 1-1 through two periods when Team White opened things up, as Carson Rehkopf (Kitchener Rangers) and Luca Pinelli (Ottawa 67’s) scored to  make it a 3-1 game before Calum Ritchie (Oshawa Generals) added an empty netter to salt things away.

Mathieu Cataford (Halifax Mooseheads) scored Team Red’s other goal.

Yager and Unger are both on their way back to Moose Jaw and will be in the line-up on Friday night when the Warriors host the Brandon Wheat Kings. Game time is 7 p.m. at the Moose Jaw Events Centre.

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