A four-goal outburst during the middle stanza by the Edmonton Oil Kings was too much to overcome for the Prince Albert Raiders Tuesday night.
As a result, the Raiders now trail the Oil Kings 2-1 in the Western Hockey League’s Eastern Conference final after dropping a 5-1 affair at Rogers Place.
“We just looked tired,” Raiders head coach Marc Habscheid told the media after the game. “We looked tired in the first two periods, and then we found our legs at the start of the third after we scored late in the second, which is something we can draw from for tomorrow.”
“We had some chances to tie it in the second, but we didn’t, and they were able to get that boost of energy. You could tell the guys were working hard though out there and a goal in the second would have made a difference, but it just wasn’t in the cards tonight.”
Following a scoreless first period, Vince Loschiavo got things going for the hosts with a breakaway goal early in the second, with blueliner Conner McDonald doubling up Edmonton’s lead halfway through the frame.
Loschiavo would get his second goal of the period a few minutes later after converting a Trey Fix-Wolansky feed on a power play, while Matthew Robertson would wire a shot past Ian Scott near the end of the middle stanza to build up a four-goal cushion on the Scotty Munro Memorial Trophy winners.
Sean Montgomery would get the Raiders on the board with a power play goal just seconds before the buzzer sounded to the end the period, but the Oil Kings made sure they wouldn’t get any closer as Josh Williams found the net in the third period while on the man advantage.
“We didn’t have our legs the whole game,” Raiders captain Brayden Pachal said. “They took it to use early and we didn’t find a way to respond.
“We need to be in that playoff mindset out there. We need to get our feet going and get pucks and bodies to the net, along with using the body more on their guys.”
The Oil Kings were led by their top line as Loschiavo had two goals and an assist, Fix-Wolansky dished out three helpers and Quinn Benjafield had a two-assist showing.
Dylan Myskiw turned aside 28 shots for the hosts, as he improved his goals against average to a playoff best mark of 1.79.
Max Martin and Noah Gregor had assists on Montgomery’s goal, while Ian Scott made 34 saves.
The two teams will return to action at 7 p.m. Wednesday in Edmonton, with Game 5 taking place at the Art Hauser Centre on Friday at 7 p.m.
Tuesday’s loss marked the first time that the Raiders had given up five goals in a game since Feb. 27, when they lost a 5-4 overtime affair to the Lethbridge Hurricanes in Prince Albert.
Loeden Schaufler and Cole Nagy did not play for the Raiders, while the Oil Kings scratched Logan Dowhaniuk, Jacson Alexander, Aidan Lawson, Keagan Slaney, Dylan Guenther, Jalen Luypen and Carter Souch.
Moravec Commits to Wisconsin
Brett Moravec, a fifth round pick by the Prince Albert Raiders in the 2018 WHL Bantam Draft, announced via social media last week that he has committed to the NCAA’s Wisconsin Badgers.
The 16-year-old from Airdrie, Alta., who attended the Raiders training camp last year, suited up for the Edge School prep program in Calgary this season and had 36 points in 32 games.
Canada Perfect at World Under 18’s
It’s been a strong showing for Canada as they head into the playoff round at the World Under-18 Hockey Championship in Sweden.
Following an 11-1 romp over Belarus Sunday, they concluded Group A play with a 6-2 win Tuesday over the Czech Republic to finish in first place with a 4-0 record and earn a date with Latvia in Thursday’s quarter-final.
Philip Tomasino (Niagara IceDogs), Dylan Holloway (Okotoks Oilers), Jamieson Rees (Sarnia Sting) and Alex Newhook (Victoria Grizzlies) all had a goal and an assist for Canada in Tuesday’s win.
Nathan Legare (Baie-Comeau Drakkar) and Peyton Krebs (Winnipeg Ice) also scored in the contest, while Nolan Maier (Saskatoon Blades) made 23 saves.
Czech Republic netminder Lukas Parik was busy all game long as he turned aside 52 shots.
Dylan Cozens (Lethbridge Hurricanes) had two goals and three assists in Sunday’s win over Belarus, where they fired 60 shots at netminders Alexei Kolosov and Rostislav Zinovenko.
Newhook had two goals and an assist in the victory, which saw Legare score twice and Krebs put up a goal and an assist.
Prince Albert product and Brandon Wheat Kings blueliner Braden Schneider found the back of the net during a shorthanded situation for his first point of the tournament, while Connor Zary (Kamloops Blazers), Jordan Spence (Moncton Wildcats) and Samuel Poulin (Sherbrooke Phoenix) also lit the lamp.
The winner of the Canada and Latvia quarter-final will face either Sweden or the Czech Republic in Saturday’s semifinal.
The other quarter-final contests will see the United States take on Finland and Belarus square off with Russia.
- Spokane 3 Vancouver 2 (Vancouver leads 2-1 – Jake McGrew Overtime Winner – Eli Zummack – One Goal and One Assist)
- Halifax 2 Drummondville 1 (Halifax leads 2-1 – Alexis Gravel – 34 Saves)
- Rouyn-Noranda 5 Rimouski 2 (Rouyn-Noranda leads 3-0 – Joel Teasdale – Three Assists)
- Guelph 5 Saginaw 2 (Saginaw leads 2-1 – Cedric Ralph – One Goal and One Assist)
- Ottawa 5 Oshawa 1 (Ottawa leads 3-0 – Tye Felhaber – Two Goals)
- Drummondville vs. Halifax (Game 4) – 4 p.m.
- Rouyn-Noranda vs. Rimouski (Game 4) – 5:30 p.m.
- Saginaw vs. Guelph (Game 4) – 5 p.m.
- Ottawa vs. Oshawa (Game 4) – 5 p.m.
- Prince Albert vs. Edmonton (Game 4) – 7 p.m.
- Vancouver vs. Spokane (Game 4) – 8 p.m.