Raiders go 1-1 in weekend homestand

Nathan Reiter/Daily Herald. The Prince Albert Raiders celebrate a first period goal in Saturday's win over the Medicine Hat Tigers.

A night after a disappointing loss, the Prince Albert Raiders rebounded in a big way defeating the Medicine Hat Tigers 8-3 at the Art Hauser Centre on Saturday night.

Raider head coach Jeff Truitt says he was pleased with how the team played in the victory.

“The overall determination from start to finish is what we talked about this morning, how the desperation has to get up. I didn’t think it was there as much as we needed it last night and we didn’t get rewarded but I thought we got rewarded tonight. I thought we played physical, we played pretty good defense that way to generate a lot of offense. We worked in that offensive zone, winning pucks battles and getting shots. We shot the puck with a mentality here tonight.”

Sloan Stanick would open the scoring at the 8:00 mark of the opening frame wiring home his 30th goal of the season from the left circle. Aiden Oiring received the lone helper.

Stanick says it was a special night for the Raiders on the ice.

“It was great. Obviously, everyone was electric in the crowd, and everyone on the ice was wanting to score. Every line was clicking tonight. It’s awesome to get a contribution from everyone.

Niall Crocker would be sprung on a partial breakaway at the 11:39 mark of the first period and the 19-year-old Raider assistant captain would make no mistake for his 22nd goal of the campaign. Oiring picked up his second point of the night with the only assist on the tally.

On a second chance, Ryder Ritchie would convert for his 16th goal of the season to extend the Raider lead to 3-0 at the 15:02 mark to give the home side a 3-0 advantage. Krzysztof Macias and Justice Christensen assisted on the play.

The Raiders would lead the shots 14-9 after twenty minutes of play.

Against a high power offensive club like Medicine Hat, Truitt says he was pleased with how the Raiders played defensively.

“I thought that we were on top of them all night. We didn’t allow that freewheeling. They did at times and you can only hold them down for so long. I thought that we were determined on puck battles and being in the right position that they had to go through us and it’s something that you need to do against a skilled team like this.”

A power play goal from Brayden Dube would expand the Prince Albert lead to four just 1:47 into the second period. It would be the 15th goal of the season for Dube with Sloan Stanick picking up the lone assist.

Reid Andresen would get the Tigers on the board with his eighth goal of the season at the 4:36 mark. Andrew Basha picked up the lone assist.

Justice Christensen would answer back for the Raiders with his 10th goal of the season at the 9:17 mark. Stanick picked up his third point of the night with the only helper.

Hunter St. Martin would pull the Tigers within three at the 13:39 mark on the power play with his 23rd goal of the season. Oasiz Wiesblatt and Josh Van Mulligen assisted on the play.

The Raiders would get off to a hot start in the third period as Aiden Oiring would strike just 0:39 in with his 17th goal of the season. Christensen and Stanick assisted on the play.

Tiger captain Tyler MacKenzie would strike for his 16th goal of the season at the 10:47 mark. Andrew Basha and Tomas Mrsic assisted on the play.

After it appeared that Tigers netminder  Zach Zahara made a tremendous stop on Ryder Ritchie on a 2-on-1 break, the puck would trickle over the goal line to extend the Raider lead as Ritchie would pick up his 17th goal of the year at the 12:32 mark. Macias had the lone helper.

Brayden Dube would pad the Raider lead at the 17:29 mark with his second goal of the night. Cole Peardon had the lone helper.

Max Hildebrand made 32 stops for the Raiders while Zach Zahara made 23 stops for the Tigers.

The Raiders welcome the Swift Current Broncos to the Art Hauser Centre on Tuesday night. Puck drops at 7 p.m.

Oil Kings 3 Raiders 2 (OT)

The Prince Albert Raiders salvaged a point as they fell 3-2 in overtime to the Edmonton Oil Kings on Friday night at the Art Hauser Centre.

Raider head coach Jeff Truitt says there were some details Prince Albert wasn’t sharp at, which cost the game.

“We got the point. There’s no doubt about that. You’re down, you’re chasing it again, and we come back and tie it, which is good. We worked hard. We had some grade A opportunities that we didn’t finish on here tonight, but we had breakdowns where we got beat off the rush a couple of times. Our back checking wasn’t real good. We were lazy on that. This time of season, you cannot get away with a lack of details that led to their two goals. We’re taking penalties, key guys, at wrong times. When everything’s said and done, we don’t finish. They capitalize. Margin of error is thin, and we got the one.”

Florida Panthers prospect Gracyn Sawchyn would open the scoring with his 16th goal of the season at the 4:39 mark of the first period. Gavin Hodnett and Parker Alcos assisted on the play.

A turnover behind the net by Edmonton Oil Kings would lead to the Raiders pulling even at the 7:25 mark. Sloan Stanick would pick the pocket of an Oil King player and slide the puck five hole past Oil King netminder Kolby Hay for his 29th goal of the season, coming of the unassisted variety.

A breakdown in the neutral zone led to a two-on-one break for the Oil Kings and Landon Hanson would deliver his sixth goal of the season to give Edmonton a 2-1 edge at the 14:10 mark of the opening frame. Ty Nash had the helper on the play.

Shots favored Prince Albert 10-9 after one period of play.

Neither team would find the back of the net in the second period with the Raiders outshooting Edmonton 11-5 in the frame.

One area that Truitt wanted to see improvement from his club in was faceoffs in key situations.

“We had situations where they had an icing call and they had the third and fourth line out. We had our first or second line out and we don’t get much out of it. We lose a face off, I thought that was a real key thing here tonight. We didn’t have a lot of possession of face offs. We wound up chasing it a little bit, not possessing. it’s key things right now.”

It would take until the 11:14 mark of the third period for the Raiders to tie the game. A loose puck in the crease would just sneak over the line to pull Prince Albert even at 2-2. Niall Crocker would receive credit for his 21st goal of the season on the play with Jacob Hoffrogge and Krzysztof Macias receiving the helpers on the play.

A penalty against Justice Christensen early in overtime turned out to be critical as the Oil Kings would strike for the game winner on the man advantage. Gavin Hodnett would deposit his 19th goal of the season to secure a 3-2 win for the Oil Kings. Ty Nash and Gracyn Sawchyn provided the assists.

Kolby Hay stopped 28 of 30 Raiders shots for Edmonton, Max Hildebrand made 24 saves for the Raiders.

Around The WHL

The Raiders did pick up some help on the out of town scoreboard with the Red Deer Rebels holding on for a 4-3 regulation victory over the Calgary Hitmen at the Scotiabank Saddledome. Brandon also downed the Lethbridge Hurricanes by a 4-0 final score.

The Raiders return to action on Saturday night when they welcome Gavin McKenna and the Medicine Hat Tigers to the Art Hauser Centre. Puck drops at 7 p.m.