The Red Deer Rebels were looking to rebound in a big way against the Saskatoon Blades after a 5-1 defeat at the hands of the Calgary Hitmen in Calgary.
Rebound they did, with a 2-1 victory that looked solid despite some late-game theatrics.
“It was an awesome character win for us. The game got tight and the way we came together and get the win was awesome,” Forward Ethan Sakowich said.
The Rebels and Blades both came into the game with a win a piece, but the Blades did carry some momentum in the game having one less loss and also having won last years season series with Red Deer going 2-1-0-0.
That momentum, if there was any, was quickly subdued by a Rebels team that was quick on the puck, forcing three Blades penalty — one of which leading to a goal by Arshdeep Bains.
The Rebels would head into the second period up 1-0.
The Blades Riley McKay would strike first with a goal, but the powerplay would continue to benefit Red Deer after a slashing penalty to Aidan De La Gorgendiere lead to a streaking-down-the-left-side powerplay goal by Sakowich.
Sakowich joked that he closed his eyes on the goal.
“It was awesome seeing the guys get that happy for me. I don’t do it that much, so it was pretty cool,” he said
Red Deer would maintain the one-goal lead heading into the third and deciding period.
It would look like the Blades would once again tie it up twice in the third period but goalie interference and a high stick would lead to two called-back goals with under four minutes to play.
“It wasn’t as tense as you would think. We kept it good on the bench — nice and light. It was awesome the way the guys reacted to that because we could have been down in the dumps,” Sakowich said.
The Rebels would go on to survive the drama and the extra attacker leading to 2-1 win.
Anders would make 34 saves for his second win of the year.
“He was unbelievable. He is always one of our best players night in, night out. He gives us a chance to win every night,” Sakowich.
The Rebels now head to Swift Current and Medicine Hat, before returning home for an Oct. 11 home game against the Portland Winterhawks.
Rebels strike deal with Raiders
Before the game, General Manager/Head Coach Brent Sutter announced a trade with the Prince Albert Raiders.
The Rebels acquired 17-year old forward Cohner Saleski in exchange for a sixth round selection in the 2020 Western Hockey League Bantam Draft and a fourth round pick in the 2021 WHL Bantam Draft.
Saleski was a Raiders first round pick in the 2017 WHL Bantam Draft, he went 17th overall.
Hometown: Saskatoon, SK
Date of birth: Jan. 14, 2002