(As of 12:01 AM)

WHL (PRINCE GEORGE COUGARS):

Prince Albert Raiders  6  Prince George Cougars  2

The Raiders exploded with three unanswered goals in the third period.

The game was tied 2-2 until Prince Albert scored the winner on the power play midway thru the second.

It was the only PP goal of the game as PA went 1/6 while PG was 0/3 with the man advantage.

Jackson Leppard (late in the first) and Mike MacLean (early in the second) tallied for the Cougars, who are 2-1 on a six-game homestand.

Taylor Gauthier, the WHL Goalie of the Week, made 43 saves as the Raiders outshot the Cats 49-25 before 2,405 fans at CN Centre.

14 of the 18 Prince Albert skaters picked up at least a point and no player had more than two.

Watch the highlights here.

The 16-23-1-2 Cougars are sitting in the second and final wild-card playoff spot, a point ahead of the (15-21-4) Seattle Thunderbirds and two in front of the (15-23-2-1) Kamloops Blazers.

Prince George is also just three points behind the (17-22-3-1) Kelowna Rockets, who are third in the B.C. Division.

The Rockets lost 5-1 to the visiting Moose Jaw Warriors Wednesday.

The Cougars host Kamloops Saturday night and Sunday afternoon after the Blazers entertain the (38-5-0-1) Raiders on Friday.

 

BCHL (PG SPRUCE KINGS):

The Prince George Spruce Kings are headed to the Okanagan for three games in as many days.

They visit the (28-12-1-2) Penticton Vees Friday, the (17-16-7-3) Vernon Vipers Saturday and the (24-19-0-1) West Kelowna Warriors Sunday afternoon.

The 26-11-2-3 Spruce Kings (with just 16 games left) are second in the Mainland Division, two points behind the (29-11-1) Chilliwack Chiefs.

The Spruce Kings next home games will be against the Coquitlam Express on Jan. 25th and 26th.

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Spruce Kings defenceman Nick Bochen has committed to the University of Michigan Wolverines (NCAA Div. 1) for the 2020/21 season.

The 17-year-old Bochen, from North Vancouver, has 25 points (5 goals) in 41 games in his first full season with the Spruce Kings.

NHL: (5 Wednesday games)

Edmonton  3  Vancouver  2  (SO)
(The 22-21-6 Canucks are just a point back of Edmonton and Minnesota for the final wild-card spot. Elias Pettersson missed his fourth straight game with a knee injury (minor MCL sprain) but he is expected back in the lineup Friday when Vancouver hosts Buffalo. The 20-year-old Pettersson has 42 points, including 22 goals in 38 games. The Canucks are 1-0-2 on a six-game homestand. They also entertain Detroit Sunday and Carolina Wednesday before having a 10-day break)

The Canucks have dealt defenceman Michael Del Zotto to the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for defenceman Luke Schenn and a 2020 seventh-round draft pick. Schenn will report to the AHL Utica Comets.

Buffalo  4  Calgary  3  (OT)
Ottawa  6  Colorado  2
Philadelphia  4  Boston  3
Arizona  6
  San Jose  3

There are seven Thursday games in the NHL but just two Canadian teams in action: Winnipeg at Nashville and Toronto at Tampa

 

BCMML (CARIBOO COUGARS):

The Cariboo Cougars head to Fort St. James this weekend for a pair of games, including the BCMML Winter Classic (first midget outdoor game in Canada).

The Cougars play the Vancouver NE Chiefs Saturday night at 5 indoors at the Fort Forum and Sunday afternoon at 2 outdoors at the Ernie Sam Memorial Arena.

The 16-5-3 Major Midget Cougars are in third place in the 11-team league, just a point behind the (16-5-2-2) Chiefs.

BCMML (CARIBOO COUGARS MINOR MIDGET):

The Cariboo Cougars Minor Midget team will host the Greater Vancouver Canadians in a three-game set.

The two teams face off Friday and Saturday night at 7:30 and Sunday morning at 11:15 at Kin 1.

The Cariboo 15-year-olds are 11-5-1-1 and in second place, a point ahead of the (11-3-1) Okanagan Rockets and three points back of the first place (13-4-1) Thunderbirds.

The (5-8-3-2) Canadians are in 8th place.

 

FIGURE SKATING:

Justin Hampole of Prince George finished 13th at the Canadian Tire National Figure Skating Championships in Saint John, N.B.

There were 18 skaters in Hampole’s Jr. Men’s division.

The 17-year-old Hampole was 10th following the short program.

He dropped to 13th after the free program.

Hampole was fourth out of five among participants from the B.C./Yukon region.

 

CANADA WEST BASKETBALL: (UNBC TIMBERWOLVES)

The UNBC Timberwolves visit the Alberta Golden Bears and Pandas Friday and Saturday in Canada West basketball.

The Timberwolves have just six regular-season games remaining.

UNBC is 9-5 in the women’s standings (7th place out of 17 teams) and 7-7 in the men’s division (7th place).

The top 12 teams advance to the playoffs.

The Alberta women have won 10 in a row and are third with a 12-2 record.

The Alberta men have won eight straight and are third with a record of 11-3.

(UNBC also plays at UBC the 25th and 26th before closing out its regular season with home games against Lethbridge Feb. 1st and 2nd)


NBA:

Boston Celtics  117  Toronto Raptors  108

The 33-13 Raptors are in a virtual tie for the Eastern Conference with the (32-12) Milwaukee Bucks.

The Raptors host the (11-34) Phoenix Suns tonight and the (19-25) Memphis Grizzlies Saturday.

 

TENNIS:

Canadian Milos Raonic has advanced to the third round at the Australian Open tennis championships.

The 16th seeded Raonic beat Stan Wawrinka 3-1 with all four sets ending up 7-6.

The only other Canadian to win in round two was Denis Shapovalov, will now face top-seeded Novak Djkovic in
his next match.

Eugenie Bouchard lost to Seven-time Australian champion Serena Williams 6-2, 6-2.

Williams is aiming for a 24th Grand Slam singles title.

 

NFL:

The NFL Conference Championship Games will be played Sunday.

In the NFC, the LA Rams visit New Orleans (12:05 p.m. PT).

In the AFC, New England is at Kansas City (3:40 p.m. PT).

The Saints are favoured by 3.5 and the Chiefs are 3-point favourites.

The winners advance to Super Bowl 53 February 3rd in Atlanta.