The last time the Hitmen played the Pats, Mark Kastelic had a good game, scoring two goals. Wednesday evening, he took his game to another level: one power-play goal, one shorthanded goal, two assists, 18-for-22 in the face-off circle, and seven PIM for good measure. His performance was worthy of the first star of the game.
Kastelic tied up the game on the power play. He then gave the Hitmen a lead they did not relinquish on a shorthanded break away just 1:01 later.
Dave Struch spoke about Kastelic postgame. “He plays like a pro. For our guys to play, they got to be ready for him because he’s 100 percent all the time, with or without the puck.”
The Pats carried their good third period from the previous night into this game. Going into the first intermission, they had the lead. They carried the bulk of play and had more good scoring chances, despite being down on the shot clock. Austin Pratt scored at the three minute mark of the first period. It was his third game-opening goal of the season.
Pratt commented on the past two games, saying, “It was two hard fought games. but you know, we did lose both of them so that’s just the tough part of it. You want to win. Once you get a win or two, then you hate losing even more. So we’re trying to take positive way and try not to get negative because that’s when things go south. It’s little bounces that we need and we have a few chances that need to go in and you know it’s a different game. You know when the best teams in the league come to town, and it’s definitely you gotta raise your game or else they’re gonna walk all over you.”
Jet Woo was able to tie it up just 15 seconds into the second period as he got past the Pats defenceman and scored on the back hand over Max Paddock‘s right shoulder.
Ty Kolle restored the Pats lead a mere 24 seconds later, as he and Pratt had a 2-on-1. Kolle decided to shoot and he scored five-hole on Jack McNaughton.
Kastelic then scored his two goals, and Riley Stotts added the insurance marker in the third.
The only thing lacking in the game tonight was the power play, according to coach Struch. “It was inconsistent work ethic. For the most part, it hasn’t been that way. We work hard, we get opportunities. Sometimes we score, sometimes we don’t. Tonight, we were under a lot of pressure. We couldn’t get set up breaking out a lot, and they had pressure hard up ice, and it was real hard on our power play.”
Jack McNaughton, who collected second star of the game, made 31 saves on 33 shots.
Third star Max Paddock stopped 32-of-36.
Calgary’s power play was 2-for-3; Regina went 0-for-5.
Riley Stotts now has a four-game point streak with two goals and three assists.
With a goal and an assist, Ty Kolle now has three goals and one assist in his past four games.
The Pats are now on the road until December 7th as Agribition rolls into town. They go to Swift Current and Brandon this weekend, before embarking on a 4 games in 5 nights tour of the Central Division. They then head to Winnipeg before the next home game.