Woodside stellar in Mintos loss to Pat Canadians

Lucas Punkari/Daily Herald Prince Albert Mintos goalie Carter Woodside pounces on a loose puck during the third period of Sunday's matchup with the Regina Pat Canadians.

Carter Woodside has been busy between the posts over his last two games.

However, the Prince Albert Mintos goaltender and Regina Pats prospect doesn’t seem to mind when his defence has been making his job easy.

“They’ve been able to move guys out of the way to give me a clear view of the puck as it’s coming at me,” Woodside said.

“We were hemmed in a little bit today but I was still able to make the saves thanks to their help. It was pretty similar to how the game played out in Saskatoon Thursday night.”

Coming off of a 40-save showing in a 4-2 road win over the Contacts, Woodside turned aside 33 shots Sunday at the Art Hauser Centre as the Mintos dropped a 3-1 decision to the Regina Pat Canadians.

“Even though we lost, I thought we played well,” Woodside said. “We worked really hard throughout the game, especially on defence.

“We got hemmed in our own end a few times, but we were able to pressure them throughout the game.”

Although the Pat Canadians held a considerable 36-14 shot advantage, the main focus of the afternoon for Mintos head coach Ken Morrison was on his team’s play in their own end.

“We were trying to keep their top guys (Cole Sillinger, Braden Birinie and Cal Caragata) off of the scoreboard and I think we did a good job of that,” Morrison said. “We put Ethan Ironside’s line out there against them and I thought Ethan was excellent in matching up with Sillinger.”

“We turned the puck over a lot in the neutral zone and our passes weren’t sharp at time, but I thought the guys worked really hard and were doing a lot of good things. When I looked up at the scoreboard early on and saw that we were getting outshot by a big margin, that surprised me a bit.”

Jake Huska scored on the power play on the Mintos’ only shot of the second period to give his team the lead with 5:55 left in the frame.

The Pat Canadians responded less than a minute later as Spokane Chiefs draft pick Blake Swetlikoff converted a feed from Sillinger, who is a prospect of the Medicine Hat Tigers.

Luc Marleau, a one-time Prince Albert Raiders draft pick and a prospect of the SJHL’s Melfort Mustangs, slid a shot through the five-hole of Woodside to give his team the lead with 6:51 to go in the third period.

The Mintos were inches away from scoring a game-tying goal in the final minute, but Kyle Forster fired the puck into an empty net to end any hopes of a comeback.

Melville Millionaires draft pick Jared Thompson made 13 saves for the Pat Canadians, who have a 11-2-2-2 record and are tied for second place in the Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League standings with the Tisdale Trojans.

Sunday’s win did have a sour note to it for as Braden Birnie suffered a right leg injury in the first period and was unable to put any weight on it as he was helped off the ice.

“It didn’t look very good and I fear he may be out for awhile,” Pat Canadians head coach Darrin McKechnie said.

“Although we got three points this weekend (with other coming in a 4-3 shootout loss to the Beardy’s Blackhawks Saturday), we did lose a couple of players due to injuries. It’s part of the game, but it’s still tough to take.”

Next up for the 11-7-1-0 Mintos, who are tied for fifth in the standings with the Blackhawks, is a 1:30 p.m. battle with the 7-4-1-2 Notre Dame Hounds Saturday at the Art Hauser Centre.