Don’t panic, call on Sloan Stanick: Raider comeback stuns Hurricanes

Photo by Erica Perreaux/@perreauxphoto. The Prince Albert Raiders celebrate a late third period goal by Turner McMillen at the Enmax Centre on Saturday evening.

With a massive two points on the line for both sides, the Prince Albert Raiders shocked the crowd at the Enmax Centre, downing the Lethbridge Hurricanes 4-3 in overtime on Saturday night.

Raider head coach Jeff Truitt says the win was crucial for Prince Albert’s playoff chances, but he wants to see more consistency out of his team moving forward.

”It’s massive and I see Calgary wins and whatnot but we just got to keep the pedal down, keep focused and play more than just four minutes than we did tonight. I didn’t think we played very well all game long, but we figured it out and we got the job done. But we got to learn a lesson from this. We can’t sit back and wait, be tentative, be light and non physical. I thought they took it to us for the majority of this game, but we dug down, we got it.” 

Saskatoon product Trae Wilke would get the Hurricanes on the scoreboard first at the 14:04 mark of the first period with his ninth goal of the season. He would receive a pass on the back door from former Raider Hayden Pakkala and lift it past Max Hildebrand. Landen Ward picked up the secondary assist.

Miguel Marques would double the Hurricane lead at the 5:25 mark of the second period as the draft eligible forward would fire a wrist shot past Hildebrand for his 23rd goal of the season. Logan McCutcheon and Logan Wormald would receive credit for the helpers on the play.

After a Hurricane penalty expired, Kale Tipler would be sprung on a breakaway coming out of the box. The rookie defenceman would make no mistake to record his first career WHL goal at the 10:07 mark of the second period. Hurricane captain Joe Arntsen picked up the lone helper.

The Hurricanes had posted a 17-2-2-0 record this season when leading after two periods entering play Saturday.

Krzysztof Macias picked up his 19th goal of the season at the 8:46 mark of the third period on the power play. Macias looked to make a backdoor pass to Niall Crocker at the far side of the Lethbridge crease, but the puck went off of Arntsen and past Harrison Meneghin to get the Raiders on the board. Sloan Stanick and Justice Christensen would pick up the assists.

Justice Christensen would strike for his ninth goal of the season at the 19:20 mark of the third period. He fired a shot on Meneghin, but the puck would trickle through the Lethbridge netminder and past the goal line after the whistle.

Upon video review, the on ice call of no goal was overturned and the Raiders would pull within one.

With just 4.8 seconds to go, Turner McMillen would tie the game with his seventh goal of the season to force overtime. The goal was unassisted and McMillen’s fifth in a Raider uniform since being signed by the team prior to the trade deadline.

Truitt says he was ready to take some chances after the Macias goal.

“The circumstances started with 3-1 and then we got the second one. Even at three one, I thought to myself that we got to go for it, we got to do it and we’ve got to have to take chances. We did and pulled that goaltender and we’ve scored some goals with six on fives and the guys did a great job putting it to the net. Turner McMillen puts it on there. Anything can happen and it did.”

The Raiders would waste no time in the extra frame as just seventeen seconds in, Sloan Stanick called game as he would rip home his 24th goal of the season to seal a 4-3 win for Prince Albert. Aiden Oiring and Christensen provided the helpers on the game winning goal.

Max Hildebrand earned his 20th victory of the season for the Raiders, making 29 saves on 32 Hurricane shots. Harrison Meneghin made 22 saves for Lethbridge.

The Raiders return to action on Thursday night when they return to the Art Hauser Centre to take on the Brandon Wheat Kings. Puck drops at 7 p.m.