Photo by JEFF STOKOE/Advocate staffRebels 3 --Kootenay Ice Jon Martin and Red Deer Rebel Brandon Underwood collide in front of Rebel goaltender Patrik Bartosak during first period action at the Centrium Thursday.

Photo by JEFF STOKOE/Advocate staffRebels 3 --Kootenay Ice Jon Martin and Red Deer Rebel Brandon Underwood collide in front of Rebel goaltender Patrik Bartosak during first period action at the Centrium Thursday.

Rebels shoot down Ice

The Red Deer Rebels started fast and finished strong Thursday. They weren’t sharp at various points in between, but it all added up to a 6-2 Western Hockey League win over the Kootenay Ice between a gathering of 4,274 at the Centrium.

The Red Deer Rebels started fast and finished strong Thursday.

They weren’t sharp at various points in between, but it all added up to a 6-2 Western Hockey League win over the Kootenay Ice between a gathering of 4,274 at the Centrium.

“We had all lines going tonight and everybody was working hard, hitting and getting pucks to the net,” said Rebels captain Turner Elson, who along with linemate Rhyse Dieno potted a pair of goals.

“We had a little lapse in the second period, but we brought it together in the third and it was just a good overall win.”

Elson netted the eventual winner in the final minute of the middle frame, snapping a 2-2 tie when he jumped on a turnover created by Dieno and chipped the puck over the shoulder of Ice netminder Mackenzie Skapski from close range.

The Rebels then erupted for three unanswered third-period markers, including a pair from Dieno.

Dieno converted a nifty passing play that involved Elson and Brooks Maxwell at 6:16. Dominik Volek upped the count to 5-2 at 15:33 and Dieno closed out the scoring 49 seconds later when he cashed his own rebound during a Red Deer power play.

The Rebels’ top line combined for nine points as Dieno added two assists, Elson picked up a single helper and Maxwell assisted on two goals.

“We had a lot of energy. We played up tempo and we were communicating a lot out there. That just makes it so much easier,” said Elson, whose goals were his 17th and 18th of the season.

The Rebels carried the play early and staked themselves to a 2-0 lead on goals by Elson and Matt Bellerive. The Red Deer captain took advantage of a turnover by Ice forward Jaedon Descheneau and beat Skapski from the low slot barely four minutes into the contest, and Bellerive, following a feed from Scott Feser — who worked the puck nicely along the wall — caught the top of the net at 8:58.

The visitors cut into the deficit just over four minutes later as Brock Montgomery, from the faceoff circle, ripped a high shot past netminder Patrik Bartosak.

The Ice were all over their hosts for stretches of the second period and pulled even when Sam Reinhart took a rebound off the end boards, cut in front and beat Bartosak to the short side. But Elson notched the eventual winner — and was the architect of the TSN turning point — at 19:33, setting up the Rebels’ impressive third period.

“Our first period was decent, but the second period was not the type of period we like to play,” said Red Deer GM/head coach Brent Sutter.

“We had a little discussion in the (dressing) room after the period and talked about what we need to be as a team and how we have to play. In the third we got our work ethic back and played more of the game we like to play, and that’s being a working team and a detailed team and creating some scoring chances.

“We were certainly better in the third and obviously that one line, our best players, stepped up here tonight and that’s what we need from our older guys.”

Bartosak turned aside 23 shots to post his 21st win of the season. Skapski made 24 saves at the other end.

The Rebels improved to 27-20-4-2 and moved five points clear of Swift Current and six up on Lethbridge in the battle for fourth place in the Eastern Conference. Kootenay, one of the league’s hotter teams since Christmas, fell to 23-27-2-0 and sit ninth, five points back of Medicine Hat for the final playoff berth.

The Rebels play the first of a four-game stretch on the road when they take on the Hurricanes tonight at Lethbridge. Red Deer heads west next week for contests at Prince George, Seattle and Kamloops.

“We had to get some momentum before we go out on the road,” said Elson. “We knew this team (Ice) is wanting to get into the playoffs and we knew they were going to battle hard tonight. But we want that fourth spot just as badly and we have to take that (determination) into every game on this upcoming road trip.”

• Rebels forward Joel Hamilton is out indefinitely after suffering an upper-body injury in practice Wednesday and was replaced in the lineup by Vukie Mpofu, who was summoned from the Saskatoon Contacts.

Mpofu is second in scoring in the Saskatchewan Midget AAA League.

• Advocate’s three stars: (1) Elson . . . Red Deer captain picked up three points with a high-energy performance; (2) Dieno . . . His two goals gave him 18 in just 30 games since joining the Rebels in November; (3) Scott Feser . . . Showed his determination and on-ice intelligence during his best game in a Red Deer uniform.

gmeachem@bprda.wpengine.com

Rebels

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

Just Posted

A nurse gets a swab ready at a temporary COVID-19 test clinic in Montreal, on Friday, May 15, 2020. Health Canada has reversed course on home test kits for COVID-19, saying it will now review applications for such devices. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Alberta declines Ontario’s request to send health-care workers

Alberta is “not in a position” to send health-care workers out of… Continue reading

The Red Deer Rebels allowed four straight goals from the Medicine Hat Tigers Friday night on the road. (Photo by Rob Wallator/ Red Deer Rebels)
Tigers hand Red Deer Rebels 10th straight loss

Tigers 4 Rebels 2 Through 17 games in the shortened WHL season,… Continue reading

Meghan Huizing has been selected by Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools as a finalist for the Alberta School Boards Association (ASBA) 2021 Edwin Parr Award. (Photo courtesy of Red Deer Regional Catholic Schools)
Red Deer Catholic names finalist for Edwin Parr Award

Meghan Huizing from St. Gregory the Great Catholic School in Blackfalds has… Continue reading

GrammaLink-Africa members are participating in the Stride to Turn the Tide campaign until June 30. (Contributed photo)
Red Deer group walking to raise money for African grandmothers

A group of central Albertans will be walking every day until the… Continue reading

Red Deer Public Schools will not pilot the new draft curriculum at its elementary schools. (File photo contributed by Red Deer Public Schools)
UPDATED: Red Deer Public Schools says no to piloting new curriculum

Alberta Teachers’ Association support school boards

Montreal Canadiens' Tyler Toffoli celebrates his goal past Calgary Flames goaltender Jacob Markstrom during second-period NHL hockey action in Montreal on Friday, April 16, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Toffoli scores twice, Canadiens put some distance on Flames with 2-1 win

Toffoli scores twice, Canadiens put some distance on Flames with 2-1 win

Canadian prop Jake Ilnicki savouring life in Seattle, looks forward to facing Arrows

Canadian prop Jake Ilnicki savouring life in Seattle, looks forward to facing Arrows

Corey Conners, of Canada, hits out of a bunker on the seventh hole during the final round of the Masters golf tournament in Augusta, Ga., Sunday, April 11, 2021. Conners notched six birdies on his back nine to take the lead after his second round of the RBC Heritage on Friday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Matt Slocum
Canadian Corey Conners surges into lead at PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage

Canadian Corey Conners surges into lead at PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage

Patrick Marleau poised to break Gordie Howe’s games record

Patrick Marleau poised to break Gordie Howe’s games record

Leylah Annie Fernandez of Canada serves to Marie Bouzkova of the Czech Republic in round 1 of the Rogers Cup women's tennis tournament in Toronto, Monday August 5, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Blinch
Rebecca Marino propels Canada into 2-0 lead over Serbia at Billie Jean King Cup

Rebecca Marino propels Canada into 2-0 lead over Serbia at Billie Jean King Cup

Dalton Kellett pulls out of the pits during a practice session for the Indianapolis 500 auto race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, in Indianapolis, Thursday, Aug. 13, 2020. Dalton Kellett is pleased his second career season in IndyCar will be different than his first, which started on an elaborate iRacing rig in his home office in Indianapolis because of COVID-19 restrictions. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Darron Cummings
Canada’s Dalton Kellett set for a more stable season as an IndyCar driver

Canada’s Dalton Kellett set for a more stable season as an IndyCar driver

Canada head coach Bev Priestman reacts during the women's international friendly soccer match between England and Canada at Bet365 stadium in Stoke on Trent, England, Tuesday, April 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Rui Vieira
Canadian women get peek at their possible road at Olympic soccer tournament

Canadian women get peek at their possible road at Olympic soccer tournament

Head coach John Tait talks to his team as Canada takes on Japan in women's sevens rugby action at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Saturday, Aug. 6, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Rugby Canada says probe into complaint from members of women’s 7s team is complete

Rugby Canada says probe into complaint from members of women’s 7s team is complete

Most Read