The Moose Jaw Warriors don’t have a lot to show at the end of their nine days in America.
Moose Jaw Warriors
The Warriors will cross the border with no wins and two points out of their five games against the WHL’s U.S. Division. The Warriors had one of their stronger outings of their road trip Friday, but lost 3-1 to the Spokane Chiefs.
“It was a good game. I thought we played well and deserved a better fate. I really thought we out-played them and controlled the play most of the game,” Warriors assistant coach Mike Vandenberghe told Country 100 after the game.
The Warriors have lost six straight games. They were 0-3-0-2 on their trip through the U.S. Division and have a 13-28-3-5 record overall. They will conclude their road trip tonight in Cranbrook as they play the Kootenay Ice.
The Warriors had been out-scored 8-1 in the first period in their previous four games on their trip. They drew first blood Friday and were the better team in the first period.
“I thought we came out well. We got the pucks in deep. We battled hard. We had an opportunity to go up two and (Brayden Point) hit the post. (Josh Uhrich) comes down the slot and makes a nice shot off of a pad and that’s who you want burying it — a guy like Point — but he hits the post. We could have been up 2-0 instead of 1-0,” said Vandenberghe. “We had some opportunities to score and spent the majority of the play was in their zone. I thought we had a great first period.”
Tanner Eberle opened the scoring in the first period. Spenser Jensen assisted on the goal for his first point as a Warrior and Jack Rodewald also added an assist.
The Chiefs took the lead thanks to second period goals by Riley Whittingham and Keanu Yamamoto.
The Chiefs kept coming and took 10 of the first 11 shots in the third period. Warriors goalie Justin Paulic helped keep his team in the game, but Mitch Holmberg scored into an empty net with 10 seconds left to ice the game. It was Holmberg’s 43rd goal of the season.
The Warriors finished 0-for-6 on the power play on the night.
“I thought our power play was good tonight,” said Vandenberghe. “I thought their goalie played exceptionally well. We had lots of opportunities. The pucks were there where we wanted them to be. I thought our structure was good. We didn’t win the net-front battle on the power play. That’s what we talked about in our pre-game meeting — owning their defence and we thought the rebounds would be there. We didn’t bury them.”
Eric Williams made 24 saves for the Chiefs.
Reid Zalitach returned to the lineup after missing three games with a lower-body injury. The Warriors dressed seven defencemen as Bryson Gore and Ben Duperreault were both scratched.