The Prince Albert Mintos saw their winning streak come to a decisive end on Friday at the Art Hauser Centre thanks to the league-leading Saskatoon Blazers.
The Mintos had won four in a row coming into Friday’s contest, but couldn’t keep pace with the Blazers, who outshot Prince Albert 14-3 in the first period on route to 4-1 win. Friday’s game was Prince Albert’s fourth in six nights, and assistant coach Bryan Swystun said fatigue was a factor.
“We were just tired. I think, from the get go, you could tell that we were running on fumes, for whatever reason,” Swystun said.
“Offensively we didn’t generate much in the first couple of periods other than that power play goal, and those are things that we’ve been doing well lately. They’ve been a big part of our games, and so we look forward to getting back and being ourselves and doing the things that are going to give us a chance to win.”
Nolan Patterson scored the lone Minto goal four minutes into the opening frame, but the Blazers responded with two more before the game was 10 minutes old.
The league leaders scored goals in the second and third period to solidify their lead, and puts themselves seven points up on the second place Regina Pat Canadians.
“I think at the start, for probably the first period and a half to two periods, we didn’t play like we have been playing to go on that four game win streak, but we’ve got to take that in stride,” Swystun said. “We’re going to see these guys again when it counts, when we’re a little bit more rested (and) focused, and we’re looking forward to that opportunity.”
The Mintos opened the scoring on the power play roughly four minutes into the first period. Patterson and Scott McLean both deflected a Caden Dunn point shot that bounced past Blazers goalie Alex Garrett and into the net for a 1-0 lead. Patterson received credit for the goal—his fifth of the season.
The Blazers responded less than three minutes later when Reese Hamilton walked out of the corner and fed Cole Reschny in the slot. Reschny beat Mintos netminder Brady Holtvogt stick side to tie things up.
Saskatoon took the lead for good on the power play roughly three minutes after. Luke Dahlen’s wrist shot from the top of the circle beat a Mintos shot blocker and Holtvogt to make it 2-1.
Tyson Yaremko scored the lone goal of the second following some nice passing on an odd-man rush, and Raiden Zacharias iced the game in the third with another power play goal to give the Blazers a 4-1 win.
The Mintos won’t have much time to rest before they’re back on the ice. The Warman Wildcats travel to the Art Hauser Centre on Sunday to face the Mintos.
“That’s going to be our fifth game in probably seven days. We’re going to give it our best shot,” Swystun said. “Warman’s a good team, and we need to come prepared.”
Puck drop is 1:30 p.m.