Medicine Hat Tigers center Hunter Shinkaruk is used to piling up the points. Last season, the 5-foot-10, 166-pound forward was second on the team with 49 goals and 91 points.
With a number of top performers graduating from that team this season, some scouts expected Shinkaruk's numbers to drop a bit. But they knew how much talent he still had, which is why he received an A rating from NHL Central Scouting in its preliminary rankings of players to watch for the 2013 NHL Draft.
Shinkaruk had been living up to that billing, with 14 points in his first 14 games. Over the weekend, though, he lit up the scoreboards with nine points in two games.
On Friday, he had a goal and four assists in a 10-1 win at the Calgary Hitmen. Shinkaruk had the primary assist on all four goals scored by teammate and fellow 2013 draft hopeful Curtis Valk. He followed that Saturday with two goals and two assists in a 5-4 win against the Regina Pats.
Now with 23 points, Shinkaruk is tied for fifth in the Western Hockey League scoring race.
Shinkaruk wasn't the only WHL draft prospect to have a big weekend. Here are a few others:
* Kamloops Blazers forward JC Lipon continued to pile up the points. The WHL's leading scorer had three assists Friday in an 8-1 defeat of the Brandon Wheat Kings, two more assists Saturday in a 5-2 defeat of the Victoria Royals and a pair of goals in a 4-3 overtime win at the Seattle Thunderbirds that pushed the Blazers' win streak to 13. Promoted to a C-list skater by Central Scouting, Lipon leads the league with 15 goals and 39 points, and his 24 assists are second.