Raiders end season series against Blades with dominant 8-1 win

Steve Hiscock

Seven different Raiders scored on Saturday night, including Sloan Stanick in his 200th Western Hockey League game, as Prince Albert concluded their season series against the Saskatoon Blades with an 8-1 win.

Two of the Raiders’ 20-year-olds scored in the first period, helping the green and gold take the lead after the first period. First, it was Ryder Ritchie throwing a perfect pass from the corner in front to Keaton Sorensen, who redirected his team leading 24th goal of the season home to make it a 1-0 game with 9:39 left in the first.

On the very next shift, the Blades tied things back up. After a turnover by the Raiders in the offensive zone, Brandon Lisowsky turned things the other way into the Prince Albert end on a two on one rush. From the left wing, Lisowsky kept the puck and fired a shot far side past Tikhon Chaika. His 33rd of the season made it a 1-1 game just 46 seconds after the Raiders opened the scoring.

Less than three minutes later, the Raiders took the lead back. A defensive breakdown by the Blades led to Sloan Stanick sending a pass to the slot for a wide open Evan Herman. The Raider captain snapped a shot home for his 16th of the season, giving the Raiders a 2-1 lead, which they took into the second period.

The second period was largely dominated by the Raiders, who scored three times. It was Carter Anderson who started the scoring off in the second frame, cashing in on a rebound chance. After Ritchie’s original shot was stopped by Ethan Chadwick, Anderson crashed the crease and buried his 11th goal of the season to give the Raiders a 3-1 lead.

A fight went down at the 8:07 mark of the second period, after Thomas Zizka laid a massive hit on Ritchie. Grady Martin took exception to the hit, and the rookie forward dropped the gloves with Zizka. Martin laid quite a few blows on the Blades defenceman, as the two wrestled each other down to the ice. Martin was assessed an extra two minutes for instigating, but the Raiders killed off the penalty.

With 8:58 left in the middle frame, Prince Albert made it a 4-1 lead. On a delayed penalty to the Blades, the Raiders took advantage of a brief six on five. From the point, Herman fired a shot that was deflected in front by Hayden Pakkala. Pakkala’s eighth goal of the campaign gave the green and gold a three goal lead, which yanked Chadwick from the Blades goal, replaced by Austin Elliott.

Elliott was given a rude welcome by the Raiders, who scored with 0.6 seconds left on the clock showing in the second period. From the high slot, Justice Christensen fired a rocket past the Saskatoon netminder. The rookie’s second goal of the season gave Prince Albert a commanding 5-1 lead heading into the third period.

The Raiders duplicated their second period by once again adding three goals in the third period. Sorensen started it off with his second goal of the game, while Stanick scored a backhand shot to make it 7-1. Harrison Lodewyk wrapped up the scoring with a powerplay goal at the 16:34 mark of the third as Prince Albert cruised to an 8-1 win.

Tikhon Chaika put in one of his best efforts of the season, stopping 32 of 33 Saskatoon shots, and receiving first star honours as a result.

The Raiders (26-33-3-0) return to action on Tuesday night when they host the Winnipeg ICE. Puck drop is 7pm.

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