Raiders face Rebels as P.A. aims for third-straight win
After a week away from competitive play, the Prince Albert Raiders are back in action on Friday night.
The Raiders ended the month of January on roll — winning five of their last six games — and they will be looking to prolong that trend when they face the Red Deer Rebels at the Art Hauser Centre on Feb. 3.
“Winning breeds confidence and confidence breeds winning,” Raiders head coach Marc Habscheid said.
“We went through some tough stretches but the the guys stayed together and stayed upbeat and positive and now we want to ride this as long as we can.”
Although the team will be without leading scorer Jordy Stallard, who has been out week-to-week since suffering an upper-body injury against the Calgary Hitmen on Jan. 22, the team has been getting scoring from other places.
Veteran forward Cavin Leth is on a tear with five goals and one assist in his last five games. Other productive Raiders include Curtis Miske and Parker Kelly, who both have three goals and three assists in their last six games. Simon Stransky has three points in three games since coming back from injury last Friday against the Lightbridge Hurricanes.
“Everybody goes through injuries and (Stallard)’s a key guy for us and he’s injured so we have to fill in around him,” Habscheid said.
“It gives other guys opportunities to play more, get more quality ice time. It just has a domino effect all the way down the lineup.”
Also returning to the roster will be goalie Ian Scott, who was in Quebec City over the weekend for the CHL Top Prospects game. Scott split Team Cherry goaltending duties with Lethbridge Hurricanes netminder Stuart Skinner. In 31:08 minutes of play Scott stopped 13 of 17 shots against as Team Cherry beat Team Orr for the first time in six years. The final score was 7-5.
Habscheid said the team has been spending the past few days continuing to gel as a unit.
“We’re still a relatively new group that’s together, so we’re still trying to work on continuity and special teams and just getting everyone used to one another,” he said.
“We’re just trying to get guys more in sync with their linemates.”
The Raiders are facing a Rebels team currently clinging precariously to the final playoff spot in the Central Divison. They are one game over .500 and winless in their last two. The Red Deer lineup also features former Raider Austin Glover, who has 11 points in 13 games since joining the Rebels.
“They work hard and they’ll challenge us physically and work ethic-wise, so we have to match that,” Habscheid said.
“We won in their building and it was a good game last time here, so it should be a good, intense game again.”
Tale of the Tape
On Feb. 3 the Prince Albert Raiders host the Red Deer Rebels as the teams meet for the final time this season. Red Deer leads the four-game season series 2-1.
Record: Prince Albert — 13-35-3-2; Red Deer — 22-21-5-3
Last 10: Prince Albert — 5-4-1-0; Red Deer — 4-4-1-1
Top scorers: Prince Albert — Jordy Stallard (37 points); Red Deer — Michael Spacek (61 points)
Goals for/against: Prince Albert — 136/223; Red Deer — 164/183
Last meeting: Jordy Stallard scored a goal and added two assists to lead the Raiders to a 3-2 win over the Rebels at the Enmax Centrium in Red Deed, Alta. on Jan. 20, 2017.