Raiders end losing skid with win over Spokane

Photo by Nathan Reiter. Prince Albert Raiders forward Ryder Ritchie celebrates a goal during WHL action at the Art Hauser Centre.

The Prince Albert Raiders were able to slay some demons and put an end to a six game losing streak with a 5-3 victory over the Spokane Chiefs on Saturday night at the Art Hauser Centre

Raider head coach Jeff Truitt says the win is big for the Raiders going into the Christmas break.

“It was big, you go through those six games and two weeks of trying to find answers and meetings and keeping spirits up. It’s just a start, I told them I’m glad that we got this one, enjoy the break because they deserve it because they worked hard but when we come back, now we got to put the pedal down and get consistent wins.”

The previous four games on the homestand, the Raiders were outscored in the first period 10-1 by the opposition, but  Prince Albert was able to flip the script in the final game before the Christmas break with a strong opening frame.

Raider head coach Jeff Truitt says he was happy the team was able to play with a lead.

“I was glad that we played with a lead. After the first and second, we played with that lead and we just kept building off things. The game wasn’t overly complicated for us and I thought our guys did a good job of that being hard on pucks and getting some good scoring. Overall, I liked our work ethic here again.”

Spokane would open the scoring at the 2:52 mark of the first period with a nifty wraparound goal by Michael Cicek. Saige Weinstein would pick up the lone assist on the marker.

The Raiders would respond at the 11:02 mark of the opening frame. Evan Herman would drop a puck back to Sloan Stanick, who was fresh out of the penalty box and the 19-year-old forward would make no mistake with a beautiful wrist shot past Spokane goaltender Cooper Michaluk for his 11th goal of the campaign that evened the score at 1-1.

The Raiders would take the lead with a power play goal from overage rearguard Landon Kosior at 18:18 of the first period. Ryder Ritchie and Keaton Sorenson were credited with the assists.

Kosior has recorded 7 of his 11 goals this season on the power play, which ties him for the team lead in power play goals with Keaton Sorenson.

Blake Swetlikoff would tie the game for Spokane with a power play goal at the 8:17 mark of the second period. Grady Lane and Cade Hayes were credited with assists.

The Raiders would regain the lead less than two minutes later courtesy of 16-year-old rookie forward Ryder Ritchie’s 6th goal of the season at the 10:12 mark. Gabe Ludwig would pick up the lone assist on the goal

The Chiefs would tie the game at 3-3 just 4:43 into the third period with Kooper Gizowski’s 5th goal of the season on the power play.

Assistant captain Carson Latimer would restore the Raider lead at the 8:37 mark of the third period. Keaton Sorenson would be credited with the lone assist on the goal.

Terrell Goldsmith would fire a point shot and the rebound would be batted in from midair by Sloan Stanick for his second of the night to extend the Raider lead to 5-3 at the 15:17 mark of the third period.

The Raiders will take a 10 day break for Christmas and return to action on Dec. 27 against the Saskatoon Blades at the SaskTel Centre.