Oil Kings 2 Rebels 1
One mistake was the difference.
In the dying seconds of a 1-1 game, a poor line change by the Red Deer Rebels cost them a shot at two points against the WHL’s top team.
Edmonton Oil Kings forward Jake Neighbours beat Ethan Anders for his 18th goal of the season with just seven seconds left in regulation, after a Rebels turnover in the neutral zone.
That goal sent the fans at Rogers Place home happy with a 2-1 win and had the visitors wondering what could have been.
“You just fix the mistake. There’s not a whole lot else you can do,” said Rebels assistant coach Ryan Colville about the late gaff.
“Obviously, it was a line change issue, so we just gotta fix the mistake and move forward. You definitely need to address the mistake, but you have to move forward and take some positives from the game, we played hard, we played well and I thought it was a good step forward.”
Rebels forward Josh Tarzwell opened the scoring with his 24th goal of the year in the first, but 40 seconds later Dylan Guenther buried for the Oil Kings 40 seconds later.
After a scoreless second, Edmonton outshot the Rebels 11-4 in the third and it was Neighbours who notched the game-winner.
Anders finished the night with 35 saves for the Rebels and was second star, while Oil Kings netminder Beck Warm was first star with 21 stops.
While it was another loss for Red Deer, considering they have allowed 26 goals in the last five games, holding the WHL’s best club to just one goal through nearly 59 minutes was one of those positives Colville said the club can take forward.
“They showed the commitment to the defensive side. We kept the chances down, they had the one power play goal but for the most part, it was a tight-checking game. In those kind of games, you have to stick with your game and not break,” added Colville.
The Rebels will take host the Calgary Hitmen Saturday, before taking off on a four-game road swing next week.