In a tight matchup with the Portland Winterhawks, the Red Deer Rebels and Ben King came up clutch.
King, who scored two goals in the game, scored the shootout winner to take a 5-4 victory in Portland between two of the top teams in the Western Hockey League.
Forward Kai Uchacz also scored in the shootout for Red Deer and goaltender Kyle Kelsey was solid in net stopping both shooters and making 35 saves.
The Rebels came in with a record of 34-11-1-3 on top of the Central Division and the Winterhawks who are second to just the Seattle Thunderbirds in the U.S. Division posting a 35-10-2-1 record.
The Rebels claimed the lead midway through the first period when forward Jace Isley notched his 23rd goal of the season while on the penalty kill. It was also his league-leading sixth shorthanded tally.
However, before the end of the opening frame, Portland scored back-to-back goals within three minutes of each other. The first was scored by James Stefan and the second came off the stick of Luca Cagnoni.
In the middle period Red Deer reclaimed their lead. At the 11:45 mark of the frame, Ben King sniped a shot past the goalie on the powerplay to tie the game but 20 seconds later Craig Armstrong potted his seventh of the year to take a 3-2 lead. King’s goal was the 100th point of his WHL career.
King scored his second of the game top shelf on the powerplay to extend their lead to two goals in the third period.
However, the lead wasn’t big enough to secure the game as the Winterhawks scored two goals with just minutes remaining in the game. The second came with just over a minute left in regulation.
After no one scored in overtime they headed to the shootout where the Rebels sealed the victory.
Red Deer is now 2-1 on their first road trip through the United States in four years. The Rebels will play two more games this weekend before they return home including a matchup in Seattle on Friday at 8 p.m. and in Tri-City on Saturday at 7:05 p.m.