Eight was the Pats’ lucky number on Friday as an 8-5 win over the Red Deer Rebels gave them their eighth win of the season.
While Pats got the outcome they were looking for, there’s still plenty of room to improve as the Pats nearly blew a four-goal lead in the third period.
Regina was up 6-2 heading into the final frame before the Rebels scored three quick goals not even 10 minutes in, cutting the Pats’ lead to just one just before they pulled away again.
“It was very good win, all wins are good. There was a lot of good things and as I told there players, there’s a lot of good teaching moments,” said head coach John Paddock.
The game was the first for captain Colby Williams who had been out all year due to an arm injury he suffered in the off-season.
Williams was expected to be eased into the lineup. Instead, the 20-year-old threw a huge hit and scored helping his team end a two-game losing streak.
“Wow. We certainly couldn’t expect the overall performance he put in,” said Paddock.
“I think he was on the ice for six of our goals. It’s hard to describe. He was extremely effective out there.”
Coming into the game, Williams wasn’t really sure how much he was actually going to play. He was going to go along with what the coaching staff had hoped.
The Regina native admits he had a few butterflies at the start of the game and would like to take back the three penalties he took, but he wasn’t going to play the game any differently than he normally does.
“I didn’t want to hold anything back. If I’m going to play, I’m going to play,” he said.
“It was a fun game to play.”
The Rebels opened the scoring on this night. Jeff de Wit beat Hollett around the halfway mark of the opening period. Before the period was out, the Pats responded with goals from Sergey Zbrovoskiy and Austin Wagner.
The Pats pulled ahead in the second with goals from Adam Berg, Wagner, Williams and Zablocki in the second.
Red Deer’s lone goal was scored by Evan Polei.
Michael Spacek and Ivan Nikolishin all found the back of the net early in the third for Red Deer. Chase Harrison iced it for the Pats with a late power play goal with his second of the season. Sam Steel added an empty nette with time winding down.
The Pats are now 8-8-1 on the season and return to action on Sunday afternoon at the Brandt Centre as they host the Lethbridge Hurricanes.
- Pats forward Austin Wagner: Wagner scored twice and used his speed to give the Rebels fits all night long.
- Pats defenceman Colby Williams: Williams made an impact in this game with a goal and an assist. He also threw a monster hit in the second period and wasn’t afraid to get involved.
- Pats centre Sam Steel: Steel not only picked up a goal and a couple of assists but was all over the ice trying to make plays happen. He was also fairly strong defensively when he didn’t have the puck.