Raiders squander early lead to Rebels

Andrew Schopp
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The Prince Albert Raiders suffered their first loss of a five-game road trip, falling 6-3 to the Red Deer Rebels  at the Enmax Centrium on Wednesday

Squandering a two-goal lead late in the second period, the Raiders road record fell to 6-7-1 with the loss. 

Raiders goalie Cole Cheveldave dueled Rebels backstop Patrik Bartosak throughout most of the first period until the Rebels opened scoring when centre Wyatt Johnson caught Cheveldave out of position, scoring shorthanded to give the Rebels a 1-0 lead late in the opening frame. 

Answering back less than a minute later on the power play, Raiders right wing Dakota Conroy ripped a wrist shot from the point over the shoulder of Bartosak to even things up going into the second period.

With the Rebels outshooting the Raiders 16-13 in the middle frame, Cheveldave and Bartosak continued to battle until Raiders centre Leon Draisaitl extended his point streak to four games, beating Bartosak in a scramble to give the Raiders a 2-1 lead late in the period.

Less than 30 seconds later, Raiders centre Mike Winther scored his third goal of the season to give the Raiders a 3-1 lead. 

Down two goals in the closing minutes of the second period, the Rebels tallied a pair of quick tallies from defenceman  Kayle Doetzel and right wing Dominik Volek to tie the game at threes going into the final frame. 

The Rebels carried the momentum gained late in the second period early into the third frame when 2014 NHL Entry Draft prospect defenceman Hayden Fleury beat Cheveldave with a snap shot from the point to help the Rebels reclaim the lead.

Despite outshooting the Rebels 34-31, the Raiders struggled to reclaim their scoring touch found in the second period. The Rebels added to the lead when right wing Brooks Maxwell tallied the go-ahead goal, beating Cheveldave on a two-on-one.

The Rebels solidified the win as centre Conner Bleackley notched the empty-net goal to snap the Rebels two-game losing streak.

The Raiders trudge on in their five-game road trip, facing the Lethbridge Hurricanes on Friday before finishing the trip up  against the Medicine Hat Tigers at Medicine Hat Arena on Saturday.

RAIDER NOTES:  Not dressed for the Raiders on Wednesday were Matteo Gennero, Brendan Guhle and Tyler Dea … Left wing Craig Leverton was back in the Raiders lineup after he was sidelined by a lower-body injury on Oct. 26 ... Going into Wedneday's game, centre Leon Draisaitl had posted 11 points in three games, he has 13 multi-point games so far this season … Defenceman Josh Morrissey overtook Dean Kolstad, Nick Schlutz and Dave Van Drunen for second in all-time scoring by a Raiders defenceman with 37 goals … Morrissey, who was invited to Team Canada's World Junior Championship selection camp on Monday, is expected to depart for the camp on Dec. 11 following a tilt against the Edmonton Oil Kings at the Art Hauser Centre  ... Draisaitl has posted points in all but eight games this season and has not gone longer than two games without a point ... Draisaitl was named CHL Player of the Week for the week ending Dec. 1 on Tuesday. 

Organizations: Enmax Centrium, Team Canada, Edmonton Oil Kings Art Hauser Centre

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