The Prince Albert Raiders won the Western Hockey League last year and they haven’t missed a beat this season so far. They had just 21 shots on Friday night as they welcomed the Brandon Wheat Kings to town, but sometimes it’s not the number of shots, it’s the quality and Prince Albert had a bunch of quality in their own arena.
The club busted out with four goals in the first period and they beat the Wheat Kings, 6-3 inside of the Art Hauser Centre.
Ethan Kruger got yet another start for Brandon, but he struggled allowing the four goals in the first period before he was pulled in favour of Jiri Patera, who was making his return for Brandon.
8:29 into the game, Zack Hayes scored his third goal of the season and less than two minutes later, Evan Herman made it 2-0 Prince Albert with his fourth goal of the season. Cole Nagy and Zack Hayes picked up the assists. It was Hayes second point already.
The trend of two goals in a short period of time continued a short time after. However, this time it was Brandon’s turn. Nolan Ritchie fired home his fifth of the season at the 13:35 mark. 43 seconds later, Chad Nychuk set up Luka Burzan who scored his ninth goal of the season to tie the game at two.
However, Prince Albert wasn’t done. On the power play late, Brayden Watts beat Kruger at the 19:10 mark to give the Raiders a 3-2 lead. Spencer Moe and Aliaksei Protas picked up the assists.
Just 31 seconds later, Jakob Brook tallied his second of the campaign to double up the lead at 4-2 after 20.
Luka Burzan scored the lone goal of the second period on the power play at the 7:01 mark to trim the deficit to 4-3 after 40.
That, in the end, is as close as Brandon would get. Brook set up Eric Pearce 6:52 into the third to give Prince Albert a 5-3 lead. On the power play, Ozzy Wiesblatt would score to seal things with 3:18 left in the game. Ilya Usau notched the lone assist.
Boston Bilous would end up making 19 saves on 22 shots in the win. The Raiders went 2-for-3 on the power play while Brandon went 1-for-3.
Next up for Brandon is a date with the Saskatoon Blades on Saturday evening. Prince Albert remains on home ice for a tilt with the struggling Red Deer Rebels.
The Raiders are 13-3-3 while Brandon is 8-11.
- Aliaksei Protas’ one assist pushed his total to 29 on the year. He leads Dylan Cozens by one point.
- Bilous is now 11-2 for Prince Albert between the pipes. He sports a very respectable 2.21 G.A.A and a .907 save percentage.
- Burzan’s two-goal night gave him 19 points on the season. He’s now averaging one point per game.
- Jiri Patera made 11 saves on 13 shots in his return.