Quick strike Pat Canadians offence sinks Mintos

Lucas Punkari/Daily Herald Jake Huska battles with Blake Swetlikoff during the Regina Pat Canadians 3-1 win over the Prince Albert Mintos Saturday night.

Saturday’s Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League contest at the Art Hauser Centre was decided in 60 seconds.

The Regina Pat Canadians found the back of the net three times in that span and controlled proceedings from there on their way to a 3-1 win over the Prince Albert Mintos.

“We need to get over that lapse that we have where things turn negative after we give up a goal and it takes us a few minutes to get back going again,” Mintos head coach Ken Morrison said. “We need to forget about it and keep playing the same way we’ve been playing prior to when they score.

“Obviously we’re a young team and the guys were trying hard to get on the scoreboard, but we need to stay even keeled out there and be ready for the next shift when things don’t go our way.”

The Mintos were able to solve Pat Canadians netminder Jared Thompson with 4:18 left in the game on a backhanded shot by Spokane Chiefs prospect Logan Cox, but they were unable to get any closer as the hosts lost their second straight game and saw their record drop to 9-5.

“I liked how we played for most of the game,” Morrison said. “We competed hard but we just didn’t get a few bounces to go our way.

“We did a good job of limiting our mistakes tonight and we’ve shown that we can play well against the top teams in the league, but we just need to turn in a strong showing for a full 60 minutes.”

For the Pat Canadians, Saturday’s win was their third in a row as they improved their record to 7-2-2-1 and now sit a point back of the Mintos for third in the SMAAAHL standings ahead of a road game with the Beardy’s Blackhawks Sunday.

“The boys responded well to a good week of practice against a well-coached Mintos team, so our hats go off to them,” Pat Canadians head coach Darrin McKechnie said.

“We only have five guys back from last year’s team so we’re still trying to get to know each other a little bit, but we do have a few players that were AP’s (affiliated players) for us last season and they have a good idea of what we expect.”

One of the new faces in the Pat Canadians lineup is Cole Sillinger, who led the offensive attack Saturday with a pair of goals.

A first round pick by the Medicine Hat Tigers in the 2018 WHL Bantam Draft, the 15-year-old forward leads the league in scoring with 24 points in 12 games after spending last season with the Okanagan Hockey Academy in British Columbia.

“Cole’s a pretty dynamic player who is obviously very talented on offence, but he’s also a smart player and very mature for his age,” McKechnie said.

“He’s always been a great leader and he’s been one of a few players that we’ve had wear the ‘C’ for us this season. A player shouldn’t be executed from being in that group just because he’s 15 years of age.”

Carson Whyte had the other goal for the Pat Canadians and Thompson made 19 saves to earn the victory.

Spencer Welke turned aside 29 shots for the Mintos, who will be back in action Thursday when the 2-8-1-0 Battlefords Stars visit the Art Hauser Centre at 7 p.m.

Forward Gavin Ingram will not be in the lineup for that contest as he serves the second game of a four-game suspension he received for a five-minute major penalty for head contact and a game misconduct for a hit on Tisdale Trojans forward Kalen Ukrainetz Wednesday night.

Meanwhile, Mintos blueliner Marek Schneider’s status is up in the air for Thursday’s affair as he’s been sidelined with an illness since an Oct. 16 game against the Stars.