Photo by JOSH ALDRICH/Advocate staff -- for Greg's gamer -- Red Deer Rebels goalie Rylan Toth stops Moose Jaw Warriors forward Brayden Point

Rebels rewarded for strong team play

All hands were on deck for a second consecutive night as the Red Deer Rebels rolled to a 5-1 Western Hockey League win over the Moose Jaw Warriors Saturday. Coming off a complete-team effort in Friday’s 6-3 victory over the visiting Prince George Cougars, the Rebels turned in a similar performance against the Warriors before a recorded gathering of 4,491 at the Enmax Centrium.

All hands were on deck for a second consecutive night as the Red Deer Rebels rolled to a 5-1 Western Hockey League win over the Moose Jaw Warriors Saturday.

Coming off a complete-team effort in Friday’s 6-3 victory over the visiting Prince George Cougars, the Rebels turned in a similar performance against the Warriors before a recorded gathering of 4,491 at the Enmax Centrium.

“It was really a strong team game. I was really happy with everyone in our lineup, right from (goaltender Rylan) Toth right on through,” said Rebels GM/head coach Brent Sutter, who watched his two best players — centre Conner Bleackley and defenceman Haydn Fleury — perform to their lofty standards.

Bleackley scored once and picked up a pair of helpers and Fleury was a two-way force the entire evening.

“When your top guys are where they need to be, it allows everyone else to settle in and play their game too,” said Sutter. “I thought both Haydn and Bleacks played very well this weekend. And all of our other older guys were good too . . . right down the line.”

Wyatt Johnson squeezed a shot past Moose Jaw netminder Justin Paulic to open the scoring 13:25 into the contest and the lead held up until Kolten Olynek notched a short-handed, two-on-one goal at 2:55 of the middle stanza.

Bleackley converted a fine feed from rookie Jeff de Wit just over five minutes later and his third tally of the season proved to be the winner. Evan Polei connected from close range and Meyer Nell cashed Kayle Doetzel’s nifty pass from the point before the period was over.

Scott Feser closed out the scoring with a third-period short-handed goal, beating Paulic after taking a two-on-one feed from Bleackley.

The losers of five in a row and the owners of a 3-7-1-0 record prior to the weekend, the Rebels decided to take a new approach and embrace a fresh start.

So far, so good.

“We hit the reset button and started our season over this weekend and said we need to play a 61-game season now,” said Sutter. “Everyone is back in the right frame of mind and with the right attitude, now we just have to continue to carry it through. When we think and play the right way, we’re a good hockey team.”

Fleury said the key to the back-to-back wins was the Rebels’ ability to handle misfortune, such as the Warriors’ short-handed goal.

“We played the full 60 minutes tonight and anything that came our way, we seemed to deal with it really well,” he said. “We dealt with adversity way better than we did during the last two weeks.”

As for his own performance….

“I kind of had some time to get refreshed last week and get refocused on what I need to do each and every night,” said the Carolina Hurricanes prospect. “I’ve been preparing a bit differenty and it showed the last two nights.”

Toth had a relatively easy night while stopping 22 shots. The Rebels fired 35 shots at Paulic.

The Rebels host the Medicine Hat Tigers Tuesday at 7 p.m., then head out on a six-game road trip starting Friday against the Kootenay Ice. Red Deer is in Spokane the following night, then visits the Seattle Thunderbirds, Everett Silvertips, Portland Winterhawks and Tri-City Americans over the next seven days.

Just Posted

Unemployment rate and EI beneficiaries down in Central Alberta

The unemployment rate for Red Deer region and the number of people… Continue reading

Insurers say Canadian weather getting hotter, wetter and weirder

Average number of days with heavy rain or snow across Canada has been outside norm since spring 2013

Women’s marches underway in Canadian cities, a year after Trump inauguration

Women are gathering in dozens of communities across the country today to… Continue reading

Red Deer councillor balks at city getting stuck with more funding responsibilities

Volunteer Central seeks municipal funding after being cut off by government

WATCH news on the go: Replay Red Deer Jan. 21

Watch news highlights from Red Deer and Central Alberta

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

WATCH news on the go: Replay Red Deer Jan. 21

Watch news highlights from Red Deer and Central Alberta

Liberals quietly tap experts to write new paternity leave rules

Ideas include creating an entirely new leave benefit similar to one that exists in Quebec

Insurers say Canadian weather getting hotter, wetter and weirder

Average number of days with heavy rain or snow across Canada has been outside norm since spring 2013

Are you ready for some wrestling? WWE’s ‘Raw’ marks 25 years

WWE flagship show is set to mark its 25th anniversary on Monday

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

In photos: Get ready for Western Canadian Championships

Haywood NorAm Western Canadian Championships and Peavey Mart Alberta Cup 5/6 start… Continue reading

WATCH: Red Deer city council debates cost-savings versus quality of life

Majority of councillors decide certain services are worth preserving

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month