Raiders pick up crucial win, down Hurricanes 3-0

Nathan Reiter/Daily Herald. Miguel Marques of the Lethbridge Hurricanes lines up across from Prince Albert defenceman Terrell Goldsmith during Wednesday night WHL action at the Art Hauser Centre.

The Prince Albert Raiders picked up an important two points as they defeated the Lethbridge Hurricanes 3-0 at the Art Hauser Centre on Wednesday night.

With the win, Prince Albert climbed back into the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference and within one point of the Hurricanes for seventh place. 

Raider head coach Jeff Truitt says the entire lineup contributed to the win for Prince Albert.

“We had confidence in all four lines, and there were a couple of situational plays where we won the matchup. But our guys played well, and simple was better. I thought we had the puck an awful lot here tonight. We had good quality chances. We defended well, but the simplicity of the game here tonight was what put us over the top. The penalty kill was good. Power play gets one. The lines were rolling, and I thought we dictated the tempo of the game.”

After a mad scramble in front of the Hurricane net, the Raiders would open the scoring.

Niall Crocker would find the back of the net with his 17th goal of the season past a sprawling Harrison Meneghin on the power play to give Prince Albert the early 1-0 lead at the 8:15 mark of the first period. Terrell Goldsmith and Sloan Stanick assisted on the play. 

The Raiders doubled the Hurricanes in shots 16-8 through twenty minutes of play.

Just 2:44 into the second period, a two-on-one opportunity would lead to the Raiders doubling their lead. Cole Peardon would feed Brayden Dube skating full speed down the centre of the ice and the pride of Roblin, Manitoba would make no mistake for his 13th goal of the season to push the Raider lead to 2-0.

Before the end of the frame, a scramble in front of the Hurricane net would lead to Harrison Lodewyk knocking home his sixth goal of the campaign to extend the Raider lead to 3-0 at the 17:48 mark. Captain Eric Johnston had the lone assist.

That would be all the support Max Hildebrand would need as he would shut the door on the Hurricanes, recording his second career WHL shutout making all 18 saves in the contest.

Truitt gave a lot of credit to the team playing in front of Hildebrand.

“If you get the win, that’s one thing. If you get the shutout, it’s a bonus. He got that tonight and got rewarded for playing a real solid game. I’m going to give credit to our guys in front of him as well. Moving pucks, getting it out, they had a couple of flurries. He’s faced more over the last little while. But (he was) just rock solid for us.”

Harrison Meneghin made 37 stops for Lethbridge in the loss.

Wednesday marked the third consecutive time the Raiders and Hurricanes had played to a 3-0 score at the Art Hauser Centre. The two teams split two games at the Art Hauser Centre last season that both finished as 3-0 final scores.

The Raiders return to action on Friday night when they travel to the SaskTel Centre to take on the Saskatoon Blades. Puck drops at 7 p.m.