Warriors fail to close out game for second straight night

Matthew Gourlie
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Seattle rallies for 4-3 shootout win

Moose Jaw Warriors

For the second time in as many nights, the Moose Jaw Warriors let a third-period lead slip away.

Saturday the Seattle Thunderbirds rallied to post a 4-3 shootout win over the Warriors (7-7-2-2) in Western Hockey League action at Mosaic Place.

Former Warriors goalie Brandon Glover made a pair of saves in the shootout. Alexander Delnov and Riley Sheen scored as the Thunderbirds (8-7-1-0) won the shootout 2-1. Brayden Point had the Warriors’ shootout goal.

“We definitely want to be known as a team that can close out a game. You want to be tough to play against — especially when you have a lead late in the third period,” said Warriors 20-year-old left winger Jordan Messier. “We have to address it.

“If we play like we played in the first 20 (minutes) we’re going to like the result most nights.”

The Warriors dominated the first period and took a 2-0 lead thanks to goals from Andrew Johnson and Tanner Eberle.

In the middle frame, the roles reversed as the Thunderbirds dictated the tempo and got back in the game with a Seth Swenson.

“Any time you sit back in this league — it doesn’t matter the team — they’re going to make you pay for it,” said Messier. “We came out hard in the first period and we sat back and let them back in the game and it cost us.”

Roberts Lipsbergs tied the game for Seattle on the power play, before Moose Jaw’s Sam Fioretti restored the Warriors lead with his 14th goal of the season.

Brendan Rouse knotted the score at 3-3 with another Seattle power play goal.

Daniel Wapple did his best to preserve the Warriors lead. He made a great glove save off of a Lipsbergs’ breakaway. Later in the third period, he made the best save of his young career lunging backwards to prevent Curtis Honey from scoring with most of the net to shoot at. Wapple finished with 28 saves.

The Warriors earned a power play in overtime, but Glover stood tall to force the shootout. He finished with 22 saves.

The Warriors host the Calgary Hitmen Sunday (6 p.m., Mosaic Place).

Organizations: Thunderbirds, Western Hockey League

Geographic location: Seattle, Moose Jaw

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