Rebels down Hurricanes 4-2

Rebels 4 Hurricanes 2 The Red Deer Rebels, with a little help from their friends, nailed down fourth place in the WHL Eastern Conference Friday at the Centrium. It was, however, anything but easy, as Tyson Ness blocked a shot at the Red Deer blueline and scored an empty-net goal with six seconds remaining to secure a 4-2 win over the Lethbridge Hurricanes before a gathering of 5,167.

Rebels 4 Hurricanes 2

The Red Deer Rebels, with a little help from their friends, nailed down fourth place in the WHL Eastern Conference Friday at the Centrium.

It was, however, anything but easy, as Tyson Ness blocked a shot at the Red Deer blueline and scored an empty-net goal with six seconds remaining to secure a 4-2 win over the Lethbridge Hurricanes before a gathering of 5,167.

The Rebels jumped out to a 3-0 first-period lead before the ‘Canes rallied to turn a potential rout into a nail-biter.

“After the quick start offensively, we got sloppy and spent too much time in our own zone,” said Rebels GM/head coach Brent Sutter.

But when it was all said and done, the Rebels — coupled with the Regina Pats’ 6-2 win over the Prince Albert Raiders — were able to secure home-ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs.

“It was nice to have Regina beat them,” said Red Deer captain Turner Elson. “This (home-ice advantage) was our goal at the start of the season. Everyone in the room is proud and now we have to keep pushing to get ready for the playoffs.”

Ness opened the scoring a mere 1:33 into the contest, ripping a rebound past ‘Canes netminder Ty Rimmer as the trailer on a three-on-two.

Elson potted a short-handed marker eight minutes later to give the Rebels a two-goal cushion. His shot was blocked by a Lethbridge defender but the Rebels captain stayed with the play and stepped around Rimmer to notch his 26th of the season.

From there, Rhyse Dieno connected at 18:24, patiently waiting for Rimmer to go down and sliding the puck into the far corner.

But that was it for the home side until Ness scored the clincher.

Brady Ramsay tallied from a scramble in the final minute of the opening period and the visitors took advantage of a horrid line change to pull to within a goal early in the middle stanza.

‘We got a little lackadaisical and obviously it was a bad line change,” said Sutter.

On the play in question, Rimmer passed the puck up ice to Jaimen Yakubowski, who busted in with Jamal Watson on a two-man breakaway. Rebels netminder Patrik Bartosak stopped Yakubowski, but Watson was there to bury the rebound.

Sutter called a timeout at that point.

“Mentally, we just lost it for a bit, but the guys regrouped after the timeout and I thought we played a good third period,” said the Rebels bench boss. “We had some quality chances and never gave up much.”

Indeed, after being outshot 28-22 through 40 minutes, the Rebels held a 14-8 advantage in shots while carrying the play in the final frame.

Rimmer, however, held his ground while making a series of sizzling stops and finished with 32 saves.

Bartosak was equally as splendid at the other end, blocking 34 shots for this 33rd win of the season.

Both power plays fired blanks, with the ‘Canes finishing zero-for-five and the Rebels coming up empty on four occasions. But the short-handed marker gave the home side the edge in the special teams department.

“We pressured them a lot. Everyone jumped up and we forced them to make mistakes and created a lot of odd-man breaks,” said Elson, in reference to the Rebels’ strong penalty killing performance.

And yet, after firing three goals in the first 18 minutes and change, the Rebels had to wonder if they’d score again.

“We had a lot of chances and we have to bear down on those,” said Elson.. “But overall we had a good night and in the third period we played a lot better while keeping them to a minimum of shots.”

The win was the Rebels’ second over the Hurricanes in three nights.

“We did what we wanted to do in these last two games. We were able to get the four points and we also got some help from the outside,” said Sutter.

The Rebels will likely meet the Raiders in a conference quarter-final starting March 22 at the Centrium. Playoff tickets go on sale Monday morning.

The Raiders would tie Red Deer for wins and points if they prevailed in their remaining four games and the Rebels lost their final three. But although the clubs split the season series 2-2, the Rebels would still get fourth place due to the fact both Prince Albert wins were in extra time.

“Our goal from here is to be a good team and make sure our accountability and responsibility is where they need to be at this time of the year,” said Sutter.

• Defenceman Riley Boomgaarden was inserted into the Rebels lineup with the absence of Devan Fafard, who suffered a facial injury when he was slammed into the boards by ‘Canes forward Graham Hood in Wednesday’s 4-0 win at Lethbridge.

Hood was assessed a boarding major and game misconduct for the hit and was then handed a two-game suspension, the first of which he served Friday.

gmeachem@bprda.wpengine.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

FILE - In this Aug. 11, 2019, file photo, an iPhone displays the Facebook app in New Orleans. Facebook says it’s going all in to block the spread of bogus vaccine claims. In practice, that means the social network plans to ban a new bunch of false claims in addition to the old bunch of false claims about vaccines or COVID-19 that it has already banned. (AP Photo/Jenny Kane, File)
Facebook says it will pay $1B over 3 years to news industry

Facebook says it will choose which publishers it will support

NDP leader Jagmeet Singh holds a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
NDP will not trigger election as long as pandemic continues: Singh

NDP and Liberals both promised some kind of pharmacare program

Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy Vice-Admiral Art McDonald is seen during an interview with The Canadian Press in Ottawa, Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019. Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan says Admiral Art McDonald has voluntarily stepped down as Chief of Defence Staff due to an investigation. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Admiral Art McDonald steps aside as defence chief amid investigation

Lt.-Gen. Wayne Eyre appointed acting chief of the defence staff

Meteor spotted over Edmonton, Alta., on Feb. 22, 2021 by several, who took to social media to share their surveillance camera captures. (@KixxAxe/Twitter)
VIDEO: Fireball meteor streaks across sky, spotted by early-morning risers in Alberta, B.C.

Videos of the quick streak of light flashing across the sky before 6:30 a.m. MST

Mike Ammeter (Photo by Rebecca Hadfield)
Sylvan Lake man elected chair of Canadian Canola Growers Association

Mike Ammeter is a local farmer located near the Town of Sylvan Lake

FILE - The Paramount Pictures gate is pictured on Aug. 23, 2016, in Los Angeles. The studio is joining other major Hollywood studios in slashing the traditional 90-day theatrical window. ViacomCBS on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021, announced that the studio’s films, including “Mission: Impossible 7” and “A Quiet Place Part II,” will go to its fledgling streaming service, Paramount+, after 45 days in theaters. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)
‘Mission: Impossible 7’ will hit Paramount+ even sooner

90-day theatrical window reduced to 45 days

Team Canada skip Kerri Einarson yells to her sweepers at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Calgary, Alta., Friday, Feb. 19, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Defending champion Einarson stays unbeaten in Tournament of Hearts

Players suggest a spectator-free debut made it less intimidating

Tiger Woods hits out of a bunker on the 17th hole on his way to winning the Canadian Open Championship at Glen Abbey in Oakville, Ont. on Sunday Sept.10, 2000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
‘The Tiger I know is a survivor and a fighter,’ Bill Paul weighs in on Tiger Woods

Woods was hospitalized after a single-vehicle crash near Los Angeles on Tuesday

Calgary Flames goaltender David Rittich (33) makes a save on Toronto Maple Leafs left wing Jimmy Vesey (26) as Flames' Christopher Tanev (8) and Joakim Nordstrom (20) defend during first-period NHL action in Toronto on Wednesday, February 24, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
‘Misunderstood’ Nylander ties game late, scores winner as Leafs beat Flames 2-1 in OT

‘Misunderstood’ Nylander ties game late, scores winner as Leafs beat Flames 2-1 in OT

Team Canada skip Kerri Einarson yells to her sweepers at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Calgary, Alta., Friday, Feb. 19, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Young Quebec team in the hunt to join Einarson, Homan in Hearts’ championship round

Young Quebec team in the hunt to join Einarson, Homan in Hearts’ championship round

A crane is used to lift a vehicle following a rollover accident involving golfer Tiger Woods, Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021, in Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., a suburb of Los Angeles. Woods suffered leg injuries in the one-car accident and was undergoing surgery, authorities and his manager said. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Golf without Woods? Battered leg brings it closer to reality

Golf without Woods? Battered leg brings it closer to reality

Most Read