Predators display early offensive dominance in back to back wins over Fighting Sioux

The Prince Albert Predators celebrate Matthew Cudmore's first period goal against the Standing Buffalo Fighting Sioux on Friday night at the Kinsmen Arena. --Kyle Kosowan/Daily Herald

The Prince Albert Predators took care of business early in the first period of a 12-3 win over the Standing Buffalo Fighting Sioux on Friday night at the Kinsmen Arena. They scored eight first period goals in the win, in a game where a combined 87 penalty minutes were assessed.

“I was really happy with the start that we had,” coach Tyson Fetch said. “Getting some early goals in front of a big crowd and getting the crowd into it was really important. Also just not letting (Standing Buffalo) get into the game at all was really key to our victory. We kept them off the scoresheet in the first period and kept them out of our end.”

Dillan Cochrane and Hayden Ulriksen led the offensive charge in the first period, scoring two goals each. Cochrane opened the scoring just 4:41 into the contest with a powerplay goal, one of four on the night. Matthew Cudmore, Braden Shewchuk, Tyson Perreault, and Kade Beaton all scored first period goals of their own, to give Prince Albert an 8-0 lead after 20 minutes.

Shewchuk added his second of the night with 15:39 left in the second period with a powerplay goal of his own to make it a 9-0 gap. Toby Olynyk responded for the Fighting Sioux with two goals late in the middle frame to make it a 9-2 Predators lead after 40.

Cudmore and Brayden Reiger scored back to back powerplay goals just three minutes apart in the third period to put the Preds up 11-2, but Standing Buffalo’s Marshall Yuzicappi responded with a powerplay goal of his own with 3:59 left in the game to cut the lead to 11-3. With just 55 seconds left in the contest, Preds captain Davin Ikert capped off the team’s offensive display with a shorthanded goal to make it a 12-3 final. Prince Albert outshot their opponent 60-30 in the game.

“Standing Buffalo is a big team,” Fetch said. “They’re just a large team. We used our speed. They were doing a lot of man on man, so we exposed that with our speed. We just had guys getting to the open places, and they weren’t able to keep up with us. We just used their size against them, because they don’t have the agility that some smaller players have.”

Fetch pointed out some of the things that he really liked out of his team on Friday, and explained what he wants to continue to see from his group.

“We want to keep the ball moving on offense. Defensively, we want to keep teams to the outside. If they’re only getting outside shots on us, they’re not going to do much offensively.”

The two teams travelled to Melfort on Saturday afternoon for two period of make up lacrosse from a game that was called off earlier this season. The Predators were holding a 5-3 lead when the game was postponed, and continued to play a strong style of lacrosse, as they were able to once again take down the Fighting Sioux, this time by a 14-5 final.

The Predators are back in action on June 4 in Swift Current to take on the Wolverines.