The Red Deer Vipers continued their momentum from a Heritage Junior B Hockey League title into Alberta Provincials with a win to open the tournament Thursday.
Red Deer beat the host St. Paul Canadiens 4-2 for their first victory, but dropped a tight 2-1 game to the Wetaskiwin Icemen Friday afternoon.
In game one, Brett Hoppus opened the scoring for the Vipers with two goals in the second period.
After the Canadiens added a short-handed goal midway through the third, Logan Linnell scored on the power play to extend the Vipers lead. Linnell also added two assists in the win for a three point night.
Mack Differenz added an empty net goal for Red Deer after St. Paul cut the lead to 3-2 late in the third. Vipers goalie Branden Bilodeau made 32 saves in the victory.
In Friday’s loss, the Vipers allowed two goals in the first 11 minutes of the game and couldn’t close the gap.
Kale Lapointe scored for Red Deer early in the third, but the Vipers weren’t able to find the equalizer. Bilodeau stopped 35 shots in the loss.
The Vipers will play Calgary Buffalo Hockey Association Rangers in their third game Saturday morning in St. Paul with puck drop set for 9 a.m.