Power play sparks comeback
It was pirate night in Prince Albert, but it was the Moose Jaw Warriors who made off with two points and left town.
The Warriors scored four unanswered goals to stun the Prince Albert Raiders 4-3 at the Art Hauser Centre.
Morgan Rielly’s second power-play goal of the game came with 8:47 left in the third period and put the Warriors ahead for good.
Whether the Warriors can mount an improbably comeback in the WHL standings, their comeback Saturday night pleased head coach Mike Stothers.
“I thought the score didn’t really indicate the way the play was,” said Stothers of their 3-0 deficit. “We got behind and battled back. I didn’t feel at any time that we weren’t in the game.
“We didn’t deviate too much. I thought that was the key. We didn’t throw up our hands or lower our heads. We just wanted to get one and we felt once we got one the game would change. And I think it did.”
The Warriors record is now 20-30-3-6 in Western Hockey League play. They travel to Saskatoon Wednesday night.
The Warriors got on the board late in the second period when Colton McCarthy forced a turnover and Brandon Potomak scored. The two rookies have been playing with confidence and an edge to their games in recent contests.
Rielly scored a power play goal with 28 seconds left in the second period to give the Warriors some life heading into the final frame.
A night after the referees didn’t endear themselves to the Warriors or their fans, the Tribe earned a season-high 10 power plays. The Warriors scored three power play goals and two of those came on five-on-three power plays.
At the end of another five-on-three, Justin Kirsch’s shot missed the net, but it deflected off the end glass to the front of the net where it was banged home by Sam Fioretti.
Brayden Point drew a high sticking penalty and then did great work on the subsequent power play to win a puck battle and feed Rielly for the game-winner.
“We took advantage of some special teams to pull it out,” said Stothers. “You have to take advantage of the opportunities that are given to you and when you get chances you have to make sure you’re burying them.”
Leon Draisaitl opened the scoring for the Raiders in the first period. Jayden Hart scored on consecutive shifts in the second period to give the Raiders a 3-0 lead.
Andy Desautels made 31 saves in goal for the Raiders.
Justin Paulic made 31 saves for the Warriors as well.