Array

Array

Rebels sneak away with win over Warriors

The Red Deer Rebels were fortunate to come out on the right end of a Western Hockey League encounter with the Moose Jaw Warriors on Saturday.

The Red Deer Rebels were fortunate to come out on the right end of a Western Hockey League encounter with the Moose Jaw Warriors on Saturday.

However, head coach Brent Sutter wasn’t apologizing for a 2-1 shootout win over the Warriors, who outplayed their hosts for more than 50 per cent of the contest and held a 43-29 advantage in shots.

“There are times through the years when you’re going to win some games you probably don’t deserve to win, and there are times when you play extremely well and don’t win. So it kinds of evens out through the season,” said Sutter.

“Tonight was one of those nights we certainly didn’t have our A game. But I was proud of the young men with the way we played in the third period. We didn’t have a very good first two periods but we were much better in the third, we played and competed a lot harder. Some character and leadership that we needed showed up in the third and we found a way to win.

“At the end of the season we’re not going to look back on this game and say’ geez, we sure didn’t play well in that game.’ We’re going to look back and say we found a way to win. These are big points. Every point you get is huge,” added Sutter.

With the vast majority of the 5,057 fans still in their Centrium seats, Conner Bleackley ended the game as the eighth contestant in the shootout, ripping a high shot past goaltender Daniel Wapple.

But it was Rebels netminder Patrik Bartosak who was the man of the hour on this night. The second-year Czech stopper was named first star of the game for turning in the type of performance that has become the norm in recent weeks.

“I don’t think it’s about me. I still think it’s about the team,” he said. “At the start of the season those goals I let in I didn’t see too many shots, so it was kind of hard. Now the team is helping me with defence a lot and I can see 90 to 95 per cent of the shots. I make 43 saves (tonight) but those are not hard saves, just regular saves.”

Justin Kirsch was the lone Warrior to solve Bartosak in regulation time, giving the visitors a 1-0 lead late in the second period when he buried a puck that bounced out of a scrum in front of the Red Deer net. Brayden Point also put a puck past Bartosak in the shootout, but Rhyse Dieno had already scored for the Rebels and Bleackley ended the match just after Warriors star defenceman Morgan Rielly failed to connect.

Mathew Dumba’s power-play goal at 4:23 of the third held up the rest of the period and took the game to a scoreless overtime. Dumba took a feed from captain Turner Elson and placed a shot to the top corner.

“We’re going out every time feeling that we’re going to win. It’s nice to have that confidence and that swagger,” said Elson of the Rebels’ fifth consecutive win since Sutter replaced Jesse Wallin as head coach. “The biggest thing is that Patty has been unreal, he’s the best goaltender in the league right now. He makes us a better team.”

The Rebels’ penalty kill — third-best in the league — has also been lights out. Lethbridge was zero-for-two on the power play in a 2-1 shootout loss to Red Deer on Friday and the Warriors were zero-for-four with a man advantage. Moose Jaw had a pair of power plays four minutes apart in the third period.

“Our penalty killing has been pretty good most of the year and tonight it was huge,” said Sutter. “The penalty kill was certainly a difference in the third period. It gave us a chance.”

The Rebels bench boss gave props to Elson and Bartosak.

“He’s your top forward. He’s your captain and we need that leadership from him,” Sutter said of Elson. “Turner puts a lot of responsibility and accountability on his shoulders and that’s why he’s our captain. He says the right things in the dressing room, he’s very well respected and he goes out and leads by example.”

As for Bartosak . . .

“Barts is obviously a very good goalie and goaltending is always the cornerstone of your hockey team,” said Sutter. “Tonight we gave up too many shots against, but we’ve also played five games in eight nights, too, and a lot went on before these five games approached us. The players all handled it pretty darn well, but Barts was certainly rock solid and he was outstanding again tonight.”

The Rebels are idle until the weekend when they host the Medicine Hat Tigers and Saskatoon Blades on Friday and Saturday.

Rebels

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

Just Posted

Cowboy Kicks, originally scheduled for May 5, will now take place Sept. 18. (Contributed photo)
Westerner Park’s Cowboy Kicks fundraiser moved to Sept. 18

A major fundraiser for Westerner Park and the Canadian Pro Rodeo Sport… Continue reading

Red Deer Rebels forward Josh Tarzwell tries to tip a point shot past Lethbridge Hurricanes goalie Car Tetachuk in WHL action Friday night at the Centrium. (Photo by ROB WALLATOR/Red Deer Rebels)
Red Deer Rebels struggles continue, drop seventh straight to Hurricanes

Hurricanes score three power-play goals in 6-3 win

Downtown Red Deer patio restaurants have been busy this summer. Contributed photo
City of Red Deer expediting patio application process for restaurants

The City of Red Deer is allowing businesses to install patios prior… Continue reading

RDC Queens forward Camryn Wallan was named the 2020-21 RDC Outstanding Female Athlete of the Year. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)
Wallan, Podgorenko named 2020-21 RDC Outstanding Athletes of the Year

Even with the cancellation of the 2020-21 Alberta Colleges Athletic Association, RDC… Continue reading

A new Angus Reid poll says that close to two-thirds of Albertans think premier Jason Kenney is doing a bad job handling the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
75% of Albertans disapprove of Kenney’s pandemic leadership: poll

Nearly 75 per cent of Albertans believe Premier Jason Kenney is doing… Continue reading

Red Deer-South MLA Jason Stephan is among those who have signed an open letter criticizing the government’s return to stricter health measures. (Advocate file photo).
Updated: Kenney tells UCP caucus COVID-19 dissent OK, breaking health rules means expulsion

15 MLAs released letter on Wednesday critical of new health restrictions

jobs - T - 3-6-2020
Finding a job: 3 job search truisms you need to accept

A job search has many moving parts; your mindset is the most… Continue reading

Here masking tape was applied to both sides of a joint to be caulked. Peeling the tape off as soon as the caulking is smeared with a finger leaves behind a neat edge. (Photo by Robert Maxwell)
Houseworks: Unheated spaces can cause tools to rust

Q: How well do woodworking tools survive in an unheated Canadian workshop?… Continue reading

University of Victoria rowing coach Barney Williams is seen in the stands during the Greater Victoria Invitational at CARSA Performance Gym at the University of Victoria in Victoria, Friday, Nov. 29, 2019. The University of Victoria and the head coach of its women's rowing team have denied allegations of demeaning and aggressive treatment outlined in a lawsuit filed last summer by a former student and team member. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
UVic, women’s rowing coach deny former athlete’s allegation of verbal abuse

UVic, women’s rowing coach deny former athlete’s allegation of verbal abuse

Canada's Julia Grosso, right, and Wales' Natasha Harding battle for the ball during the women's international friendly soccer match at Leckwith Stadium, Wales, Friday, April 9, 2021. Canada blanked Wales 3-0 but lost captain Christine Sinclair to an injury in the fist half of a soccer friendly Friday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-PA, Nick Potts
Canada blanks Wales in soccer friendly but has injury scare with Christine Sinclair

Canada blanks Wales in soccer friendly but has injury scare with Christine Sinclair

Canada's DTH Van Der Merwe, left, is tackled by Hong Kong's Toby Fenn, during the 2019 Japan Rugby Union World Cup qualifying match between Canada and Hong Kong, in Marseille, southern France, Friday, Nov. 23, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Claude Paris
Canadian rugby star DTH van der Merwe enjoying life in Los Angeles

Canadian rugby star DTH van der Merwe enjoying life in Los Angeles

Team Canada skip Brendan Bottcher, right, makes a shot as second Brad Thiessen sweeps against Germany at the Men's World Curling Championships in Calgary, Alta., Friday, April 9, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Canada’s Bottcher heads into men’s world curling playoffs on a winning note

Canada’s Bottcher heads into men’s world curling playoffs on a winning note

Justin Rose, of England, hits out of a bunker on the seventh hole during the second round of the Masters golf tournament on Friday, April 9, 2021, in Augusta, Ga. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Rose clings to 1-shot Masters lead as Spieth, Thomas lurk

Rose clings to 1-shot Masters lead as Spieth, Thomas lurk

People shop for essential items at Costco as pallets block off aisles and sections that have been deemed non-essential during the COVID-19 pandemic, in Mississauga, Ont., Thursday, April 8, 2021. Retailers in Ontario are adjusting to new lockdown restrictions with stores like grocers, discount and big box chains roping off non-essential items from underwear to calculators. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Ontario retailers adjust to new rules, non-essential goods off-limits to shoppers

Ontario retailers adjust to new rules, non-essential goods off-limits to shoppers

Most Read