Preds sweep Moose Jaw to open PGLL home schedule

Photo by Mike Horn Matthew Cudmore of the Prince Albert Predators carries the ball during PGLL action Saturday at the Kinsmen Arena.

It was a strong start to the Prairie Gold Lacrosse League home schedule for the Prince Albert Predators, as they broke out the brooms and picked up a sweep of the Moose Jaw Mustangs in a pair of games on Saturday afternoon.

Predators head coach Lucas Wells says he saw some positive things out of his club on Saturday, but thinks they still have room for improvement.

“I thought we played all right. I think there’s a lot to work on. One thing we have got to do is stay out of the box for sure. The first game, we came out fast and then we just kind of died off in the second. Then we were living in the penalty box, and that’s just unacceptable against a better team.”

In the first game, the Predators would score early and often and cruise to a 21-8 victory. Prince Albert would score seven times in the first period with six different goal scorers.

A nine-goal onslaught for Prince Albert in the second period would put the game out of reach for Moose Jaw.

Brayden Rieger posted 13 points in the contest to lead all scorers for Prince Albert. He registered 5 goals and eight assists in the game.

In the second game, the Predators would score five goals in the first period and would ride the momentum of the early lead to a 15-4 win.

Wells says he was happy with the way his team handled the challenge of playing two games in one day.

“I thought it was really good. It’s very warm here today and I was very happy with how everything went. All in all, it was a great day. The boys came out, battled hard in the first game. Second game, Moose Jaw was just as gassed. I think they had 14 or 15 runners. So that’s a tough day for them. But we stayed on top, and we pushed. We didn’t let them keep up with our pace, and that’s all we can ask for.”

Mason Hawkes would make 20 saves on 24 shots in goal for the Predators in the second game. He also made 14 saves in relief of Carter Altstadt in the first game.

“Mason is awesome. He’s our number one guy for sure.” Wells said about his goaltender. “He just holds our defence together. In the first game, we started Carter Alstead, and he was awesome, too. I have no complaints about him, but the wheels kind of fell off there for a little bit, and I just went back to Mason Old Reliable there, and it kind of calmed everything back down for us. It was the momentum swing we needed. It’s not something as a coach you want to do pull in your goaltender, and it wasn’t because of Carter. It was simply because we just didn’t have the steadiness back there.”

The Predators return to action on May 25 when they travel to Saskatoon to take on the Jr. Swat.