The Regina Pats found another gear in the Brandt Centre Tuesday night, doubling the Red Deer Rebels 6-3.
The Brandt Centre was alive with more than 6,200 loud and screaming fans and the Pats gave them lots to cheer about.
The back-and-forth game played out almost like a mirror to the last two. The teams traded goals in the first and second period, and the game was tied 3-3 going into second intermission. But the Pats broke it wide open in the third, scoring two goals 12 seconds apart.
The sixth goal came when Austin Wagner torched the Rebels and buried the puck behind goaltender Trevor Martin.
“Austin has great speed, and I think it’s happened enough this year; he’s joined the play and guys just didn’t seem him coming,” said line mate Adam Brooks.
In total, six different players scored a goal for the team Tuesday night which included the team’s first even strength goal of the series and one shorthanded goal. But the coach insists tonight’s result was not from changing anything, because nothing needed to change.
“We got a little more traffic, the puck happened to go in. This is how we played in game two and the pucks didn’t go in,” head coach John Paddock said after the game, echoing statements he made Monday. “You get rewarded for playing right sometimes.”
“I think the biggest thing for us is that we were struggling on the [penalty kill] and I think we did pretty well tonight and I think we had everyone going to five on five and finally got a couple five on five goals,” added Brooks.
The scrappy match ended with 16 penalties and a pile up in Red Deer’s end that saw Colby Williams take an – unnoticed – shot to the face. When the dust settled on the fight three players – two Pats and one Rebel – spent time in the box.
“It’s playoff hockey. That stuff happens. I’m fine with it. It’s kind of fun, actually,” Brooks said with a laugh.
The Pats play game four in Regina Wednesday night. A win will tie the series up before the team heads back to Red Deer for game five on Friday.
- Austin Wagner, Regina Pats
- Connor Hobbs, Regina Pats
- Michael Spacek, Red Deer Rebels
- Goals scored by: Jake Leschyshyn, Sam Steel, Lane Zablocki, Connor Hobbs, Rykr Cole and Austin Wager.
- Tyler Brown saved 25 of 28 shots on net.