Sam Reinhart’s goal 45 seconds into the third period stood up as the winner as the Kootenay Ice defeated the visiting Prince Albert Raiders 3-2 in Western Hockey League action on Friday.
The loss was Prince Albert’s second straight and in the process ended a three-game road winning streak. The Raiders also slipped out of first overall in the Eastern Conference standings with the setback as the Calgary Hitmen moved one point ahead of Prince Albert with a 5-2 victory in Edmonton on Friday over the Oil Kings.
The Ice, who have the second worst record in the league, jumped into a 2-0 advantage with goals by Jaeden Descheneau and Levi Cable less than two minutes apart midway through the second period. Davis Vandane cut the deficit in half before the middle session was over, but Reinhart restored the two-goal cushion early in the final frame.
Josh Morrissey brought Prince Albert back to within one, but Mackenzie Skapski closed the door the rest of the way finishing the game with 37 saves.
Andy Desautels got his first start in the Raider goal since Oct. 26 and the 18-year-old was solid, especially in the first period when he made 12 saves to keep the game scoreless.
The Raiders have little time to regroup as they are in Medicine Hat tonight to face the Tigers for the first time this season. It will be a milestone night for a pair of Raiders as Dakota Conroy will be playing in his 100th WHL game while Vandane will be suiting up for the 150th time.
RAIDER NOTES: Not dressed for the Raiders on Friday were Joey Santucci, Jonas Knutsen and Riley Guenther. Santucci is still on the mend from a lower-body injury while Knutsen is in France for the IIHF Division 1 world junior tournament with his native Norway. Guenther was a healthy scratch…The Raiders could be without defenseman Evan Morden tonight as the Prince Albert defenseman was given a five-minute major for hitting to the head when he laid out Kootenay’s Brock Montgomery late in the game. A review of the play will be done by the league office today.