A late third period goal from Michael Farren broke a 3-3 tie and handed the Prince Albert Raiders a loss in their opening preseason game.
Nikita Krivokrasov, Spencer Moe and D-Jay Jerome all scored for the Raiders, who fell 4-3 to the Saskatoon Blades in the Young Guns Game on Sunday.
“We pushed pretty hard, but I think they got a few lucky ones on us,” Raider’s’ 2017 second round pick Ozzy Wiesblatt said. “We tried our hardest, so I’m pretty happy (with the effort).”
The visiting Blades opened the scoring at just 37 seconds into the first period when Ethan Mack knocked a rebound past Raider starting goalie Ian Scott.
The Raiders responded roughly eight minutes later, when Nikita Krivokrasov tied the score on a dump-in from the blue-line.
“It was nice to get that first one … and of course I was happy because we tied it up,” Krivokrasov said. “We set the tone early and I wanted that.”
Saskatoon regained the lead early in the second when Arjun Atwal converted a 2-on-1 feed from Farren. However, the lead proved to be short-lived.
A few minutes later, Adam Kadlec stripped a Saskatoon defenceman of the puck and sent a cross-crease pass to Spencer Moe, who scored to make it 2-2.
D-Jay Jerome then gave the Raiders their first lead of the game when he scored shorthanded on a feed from Cole Fonstad.
The Raiders carried a 3-2 lead into the third period before the Blades came back with a shorthanded goal of their own. Payton McIsaac batted home a rebound to make it 3-3, setting the stage for Farren’s game winner with less than two minutes left.
The Raiders mounted a few strong chances as the clock wound down, but a slashing penalty to D-Jay Jerome had the team hemmed in their own end for much of the last minute.
Despite the loss, the younger Raiders remained upbeat about their overall play and their chances of making waves down the road.
“I think we’re going to have a pretty bright future with this organization, so I’m really excited,” Wiesblatt said.
The Raiders are back in action on Sept. 8 when the Blades return for a rematch at the Art Hauser Centre. Puck drop is 7 p.m.
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