The Prince Albert Raiders had a tough start to Wednesday’s game against the Brandon Wheat Kings, but a fantastic finish.
Despite giving up a goal in the first minute of the game, the Raiders rallied for a 5-3 victory on goals from five different players.
After the game, Raider coach Marc Habscheid said many newly acquired Raiders are starting to become more comfortable with their surroundings, and that’s paying dividends.
“It just seems like guys are more confident. There’s been a lot of transition. We had to do it, but with transition, guys aren’t used to one another. It takes a while,” Habscheid said. “Now we’ve been together for a while. Guys are used to one another, both personally and on the ice, and it does make a difference.”
Ty Lewis opened the scoring for the Wheat Kings, who were playing their second game in as many nights. He converted during a goalmouth scramble just 48 seconds into the first period.
The lead held until just over halfway through the frame, when Prince Albert’s Curtis Miske tallied on the power play to make it 1-1. The goal was the big winger’s fifth in his last seven games, and his ninth since being acquired from Spokane at the start of January.
“It’s just being in the right place at the right time,” Miske said after the game. “I’ve got some good linemates that are helping me out there, so I’m just looking to keep that going.”
Nolan Patrick helped Brandon regain the lead when he scored his 13th goal of the season with just 59 seconds left in the first. That lead was short-lived, however, as Raider captain Tim Vanstone tied things up a mere 32 seconds later.
“We got a really good bump up shift from Timmy’s line there,” Miske said. “That was really good for us, killed their momentum, and allowed us to get going for the rest of the game.”
A short-handed goal from Prince Albert’s Sean Montgomery and a power play tally from Brandon’s James Shearer sent both teams into the dressing rooms tied at 3-3 after two.
Parker Kelly broke the deadlock for good six and a half minutes into the third, when he scored after a great play from Kolten Olynek to beat out an icing.
Simon Stransky added some insurance with an empty netter later in the period.
“We seem to have a little bit of mojo right now,” Habschied said. “Guys are feeling good about themselves. They’re just playing, but they’re playing the right way. They’re playing with some enthusiasm and some grit, so it’s been good.”
Nicholaus Sanders stopped 22 of 25 shots to earn his ninth win of the season, while Thompson stopped 30 of 34 for the Wheat Kings.
The Raiders are off until Friday, when they take on the Everett Silvertips at the Art Hauser Centre. Game time is 7 p.m.
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