The Prince Albert Raiders couldn’t weather the storm Wednesday night as they fell 2-1 to the Lethbridge Hurricanes at the Enmax Centre.
Raider head coach Jeff Truitt says the Raiders were stifled by Lethbridge’s heavy playing style.
“We didn’t make a lot of puck plays that we needed to. We turned over pucks an awful lot under their pressure. They are a big heavy team that comes at you and you don’t have a lot of time to make clean plays and that was the problem here tonight.”
The Hurricanes would open the scoring as former Raider Tyson Laventure would strike against his former team on the power play at the 6:09 mark of the first period.
The Raiders dressed only 10 forwards in Wednesday’s game after Evan Herman was a late scratch after leaving Tuesday’s game in Medicine Hat with an injury.
Truitt says that fatigue was not a factor despite being short handed.
“Sometimes you play with 10 forwards, sometimes you play with 9. I don’t think it was a big thing, you can get into a rhythm with that number just like you can with 12. The heaviness of Lethbridge stopping a lot of our momentum, it doesn’t matter if you were off for seven days it would’ve been the same thing because of how they play. They stopped a lot of our attacks.”
Lethbridge outshot Prince Albert 19-6 in the opening period.
The two teams would not score in the second period, but the Hurricanes would double their lead thanks to captain Joe Arntsen’s fifth goal of the season 6:12 into the third period.
The Raiders would cut the Hurricane lead in half late in the third period as Carson Latimer would redirect one past Hurricane netminder Harrison Meneghin at the 16:57 mark to make it 2-1.
The Raiders would press late, but couldn’t find the equalizer as Meneghin would stand tall the rest of the way for Lethbridge stopping 21 of 22 Raider shots in the contest.
Tikhon Chaika made 35 saves in goal for the Raiders.
Truitt says Chaika has given the Raiders a chance to win in both games on the road trip.
“He’s been a star both games he has played in here recently. He has definitely been the difference for us at keeping us in games.”
The Raiders are back in action on Friday night when they host the Edmonton Oil Kings at the Art Hauser Centre. Puck drops at 7pm.