Dates set for Raiders/Blades series

Lucas Punkari/Daily Herald Saskatoon Blades forward Kirby Dach and Prince Albert Raiders blueliner Brayden Pachal battle in front of Ian Scott during a game at the SaskTel Centre earlier this season.

The Art Hauser Centre will be the place to be in Prince Albert at 7 p.m. next Friday.

That’s when the Prince Albert Raiders will begin their Eastern Conference semifinal matchup with the Saskatoon Blades, as the Western Hockey League announced the schedule for the best-of-seven series Thursday afternoon.

The East Division rivals will also play in town on Sunday, April 7 at 6 p.m., before they head to Saskatoon for a pair of contests on Tuesday, April 9 and Wednesday, April 10 at 7 p.m.

If needed, the fifth game in the series would be held on Friday, April 12 at 7 p.m. at the Art Hauser Centre.

The SaskTel Centre would play host to a sixth game on Sunday, April 14 at 4 p.m., while the seventh and deciding contest would take place in Prince Albert at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 16.

The two sides punched their tickets to the quarter-final round on Wednesday night as the Raiders swept aside the Red Deer Rebels and the Blades dispatched the Moose Jaw Warriors in four straight games.

It will be the first post-season matchup between the two sides since 2011, when the Blades defeated the Raiders in six games in the first round of the playoffs.