Northern Bears fall short against league leading Rebels

Nathan Reiter/Daily Herald. Prince Albert Northern Bears forward Sasha Malenfant skates in for a breakaway opportunity during SFU18AAAHL action at the Art Hauser Centre.

The Prince Albert Northern Bears couldn’t hang with the league leading Regina Rebels in a 7-2 defeat Thursday night at the Art Hauser Centre.

Northern Bears head coach Steve Young says that Prince Albert didn’t match the Rebels for a full 60 minutes.

“They’re a good hockey club, you got to be ready to play them. You have to match their intensity. I think in spurts tonight we did that, a team like that you have to do it for a full 60 minutes.”

It was the first game in 21 days for Prince Albert. Northern Bears defenseman Tristyn Endicott says it felt good to back out on the ice after the long hiatus.

“It was pretty good, we worked hard and did what we could do. There were some times where we let go and they had some chances to get the puck in the net.”

The Rebels would start hot out of the gate with a trio of goals in the first period

Peyton Halayka would open the scoring with 17:51 to go in the first period. Stryker Zablocki would assist on the play.

The next two Rebel goals would come just over a minute apart. Greta Henderson would double the Regina lead with her 31st goal of the season coming on the power play with 9:06 remaining in the first. Zablocki and Brooklyn Nimegeers assisted on the goal.

The Bears would find themselves back in the penalty box and the Regina power play would take advantage. Avery Gottselig would add another to the Rebel lead with her second goal of the campaign. Ashley Grice and Jada Johns picked up assists on the play.

Immediately following the third Rebel goal, Bears head coach Steve Young would call a timeout and the Bears would gain some traction.

Young says the Bears needed a small reminder to get back on course.

“I think they have to realize and believe that anybody they are playing with they will have opportunities to do some things. We reminded them at the timeout that they are here, they got to play and they got to stick to what we had planned tonight and I thought they got better after that.”

After Nimegeers would be called for inference, the Northern Bears would pick up a power play marker of their own. Tristyn Endicott’s point shot would beat Regina netminder Chloe Sorenson to get the Bears on the board with 3:31 to go in the first period. Jacquelyne Chief and Sasha Malenfant picked up assists on the play.

Endicott says it was her accuracy with her shot that led to her success on the score sheet.

“It’s nice. It’s very nice, coaches are always harping on me to hit the net and I would score. I hit the net tonight and I scored.”

The lone goal of the second period would also come off the tape of Endicott as the Northern Bears defender recorded her second goal of the contest, also on the power play with 13:15 remaining in the middle frame. Chief and Julia Cey assisted on the play.

Young says some work at practice during the off-time paid off with both of the team’s goals coming on the power play.

“I think our power play has been a little bit stale, and girls get frustrated when things aren’t going right. We worked on it last week and Tristyn had an opportunity to take some shots today and she capitalized on them.”

The Rebels would quash any chance of a Northern Bear comeback with a four goal explosion in the third period. 

Greta Henderson’s 32nd goal of the season gave the Rebels some breathing room with a 4-2 lead. Amber Daley and Ashley Grice assisted on the play.

Ashley Breitkreuz would extend the Regina lead with a goal assisted by Ashley Grice with 13:35 remaining in the third period. However, as Breitkreuz cut to the net, she knocked over Northern Bears goaltender Brooke Archer resulting in a crowd after the play.

Breitkruez and Ashley Grice would receive 10 minute misconducts for Regina while Tristyn Endicott served a misconduct for Prince Albert

Henderson would complete the hat trick with an unassisted goal with 11:24 to go in the contest.

Regina would also add a goal from Brooklyn Nimegeers with 2:03 remaining.

Brooke Archer made 34 saves in goal for Prince Albert while Chloe Sorenson turned aside 22 Northern Bears shots for Regina.

The Northern Bears return to action on Valentine’s Day when they travel to Saskatoon to take on the Stars at Merlis Belsher Place. Puck drops at 7 p.m.