Broncos beat Raiders in Swift Current

Staff ~ The Prince Albert Daily Herald
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The Swift Current Broncos took advantage of the short-staffed Prince Albert Raiders for a 3-1 winat the Credit Union i-plex in Swift Current on Friday.

Raider captain Mark McNeill was left in Prince Albert with the flu, so Reid Gardiner stepped up into his spot on the top line.

The Broncos took the lead 16 minutes into the first period when centre Graham Black scored his 17th of the season on a pass from Jay Merkley after a turnover.

The teams went to the dressing rooms tied in shots at 12 but with Swift Current nursing their one goal lead.

The Raiders tied it a minute into the second when Josh Morrissey converted a feed from Leon Draisaitl for his 10th goal of the season. It was his second in the last two games and also this year against the Broncos.

The Raiders outshot the Broncos 16-10 in the second.

Merkley -- a 17-year-old forward who joined the Broncos on Monday in a deal with the Lethbridge Hurricanes for 19-year-old Josh Derko and a third round pick in 2014 -- scored his second as a Bronco with helpers by Graham Black and Dillon Heatherington. It was Merkley's 16th of the season. 

Colby Cave scored an empty netter with eight seconds left to seal the game, with assists awarded to Black and Adam Lowry.

Broncos goaltender Eetu Laurikainen made 43 saves while Raiders netminder Luke Siemens made 31 saves.

The Raiders had the only powerplay of the game but failed to convert.

GAME NOTES: Riley Guenther and Joey Santucci were scratched for the Raiders …The Raiders have beaten the Broncos all three times at home -- 5-1 on Oct. 21, 2-1 on Oct. 30. and 6-5 on Nov. 7 -- while losing 4-1 in Swift Current on Nov. 10 after giving up three powerplay goals. The teams meet eight times this season … Josh Morrissey plays in the Top Prospects Game on Wednesday in Halifax … Adam Lowry had an 18-game scoring streak going into the game. The Calgary product is a Winnipeg Jets third rounder … The Broncos were without Laurikainen during the World Junior Championship when he represented Finland. It couldn’t have been easy for the Broncos to lose their top goalie, only to see him not play a minute in the tournament … The Raiders meet the Red Deer Rebels on Saturday at the Art Hauser Centre in Prince Albert at 7 p.m. The Raiders beat the Rebels 5-4 on Oct. 2 and lost 6-1 in Red Deer on Nov. 18 …

Organizations: Raiders, Broncos, Credit Union Winnipeg Jets Art Hauser Centre

Geographic location: Swift Current, Prince Albert Raiders, Halifax Calgary Finland Red Deer

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