Rebels blank Warriors in tight battle

With Western Hockey League teams now well into the second half of the regular season, games are starting to resemble what fans will be watching in late March and beyond. The Red Deer Rebels and Moose Jaw Warriors hooked up in a tight, intense battle Wednesday evening, an outing that was scoreless until Rebels forward Ivan Nikolishin connected at 1:19 of overtime, taking a feed from Adam Helewka and beating goalie Zach Sawchenko with a low slot.

With Western Hockey League teams now well into the second half of the regular season, games are starting to resemble what fans will be watching in late March and beyond.

The Red Deer Rebels and Moose Jaw Warriors hooked up in a tight, intense battle Wednesday evening, an outing that was scoreless until Rebels forward Ivan Nikolishin connected at 1:19 of overtime, taking a feed from Adam Helewka and beating goalie Zach Sawchenko with a low slot.

The Rebels’ performance was very much in contrast to their showing Saturday night at the Centrium, where they fell 6-5 in overtime to the Vancouver Giants. Needless to say, Red Deer GM/head coach Brent Sutter was pleased to see his charges churn out a defensive gem before 3,112 fans at Mosaic Place.

“We’ve been talking about how we have to tighten up defensively because we’re heading into playoff-type hockey,” said Sutter, following the 1-0 victory. “We have to get accustomed to that, to not playing such high risk hockey and turning pucks over.

“We kept our turnovers to a minimum tonight and now we have to build off that.”

The Rebels denied the Warriors less than a handful of scoring chances while outshooting their hosts 38-25, including 18-7 in the second period.

“We had some opportunities but we didn’t capitalize,” said Sutter. “We didn’t give up a whole lot and Tother (Rebels goaltender Rylan Toth) made the saves when he had to. He was solid and I thought their guy was really good, too.

“It was kind of like a playoff game with a lot of close checking. I just thought our entire game was solid.”

Both teams were zero-for-three on the power play.

The Rebels are in Brandon Friday for the second game of their three-game road trip. The Wheat Kings will be out for revenge after suffering a 10-0 loss to Red Deer Jan. 2 at the Centrium.

“We have to go in there and play well,” said Sutter. “We know they’re going to be fired up after the last game. They’re going to be ready to play so we have to make sure we match their emotion and go out and play our game.”

With the victory, Red Deer remains two points back of the Central Division and Eastern Conference leading Lethbridge Hurricanes, who were 5-2 winners Wednesday at Swift Current, where the Rebels will conclude their trip Saturday.

• The three stars were (1) Sawchenk0, (2) Toth, who posted his fifth shutout of the season, and (3) Nikolishin.

Rebels

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

Just Posted

The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for Aug. 9

The latest numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada as of 4:00… Continue reading

Team says technical issues from ‘unprecedented demand’ left Oilers raffle in limbo

EDMONTON — The Edmonton Oilers’ record-setting online 50/50 raffle from Friday with… Continue reading

RCMP investigate possible drowning at Pigeon Lake: Man and woman found dead on shore

Bodies recovered from Pigeon Lake’s northeastern shores.

Red Deer Region Highland Dancing Association to participate in national dance-a-thon

Central Albertan dancers have missed performing during the COVID-19 pandemic, says the… Continue reading

QUIZ: Do you know the truth?

In what has been described as a post-truth era, how much do you know about truth and lies?

Cast your votes for Best of Red Deer

The Advocate’s Best of Red Deer Readers’ Choice Awards are back. Community… Continue reading

US hits 5 million confirmed virus cases, Europe is amazed

ROME — With confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. hitting 5 million… Continue reading

University of Victoria and women’s rowing coach sued over alleged verbal abuse

VANCOUVER — A former member of the University of Victoria’s varsity women’s… Continue reading

Parents, teachers press Quebec to revise back-to-school plan amid COVID-19

MONTREAL — For Politimi Karounis, August is usually spent buying new backpacks,… Continue reading

69 salmonella cases in B.C. linked to red onions, province’s CDC says

VANCOUVER — The BC Centre for Disease Control is warning people in… Continue reading

Black Nova Scotia man ‘overjoyed’ as struggle for land title moves forward

HALIFAX — Christopher Downey finished building his home in 2002 on a… Continue reading

Puncher’s chance: Fighting is up during unique NHL playoffs

The Toronto Maple Leafs’ season was hanging by a thread from one… Continue reading

Most Read