Raiders claw back into playoff position with second straight win

Staff ~ The Prince Albert Daily Herald
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The Prince Albert Raiders clawed their way back into a playoff spot with a 4-1 triumph over the Spokane Chiefs on Wednesday at the Veterans Memorial Arena.

In their first tilt of a five-game tour of the WHL's U.S. Division, the Raiders took advantage of a 4-1 Red Deer Rebels loss at the hands of the Edmonton Oil Kings to reclaim the Eastern Conference's eighth and final playoff spot,  improving their record to 28-28-4. 

Forwards Dakota Conroy and Shane Danyluk each netted a pair of goals while centre Chance Braid contributed two assists as the Raiders scored three unanswered markers in the second period to clinch their second straight victory.

Danyluk's first goal seven and half minutes into the middle frame would stand as the game-winner, backed by a 36-save performance by Raiders starter Cole Cheveldave who improved his record to 22-21-3.

While blanking the Chiefs on five power play opportunities, the Raiders successfully contained league goals leader right wing  Mitch Holmberg, keeping the 51-goal scoring overager off the score sheet.

The Raiders now find themselves neck-and-neck with the Rebels for a playoff spot. With a game in hand over the Rebels, the Raiders post a total of 60 points in the standings with 12 games remaining in their regular season schedule.  

The Raider's American road trip trudges on as they travel to Kennewick, Wash., to take on the Tri-City Americans on Friday at Toyota Centre.  

RAIDERS NOTES: Not dressed for the Raiders on Wednesday were Brendan Guhle, Craig Leverton and Tim Vanstone ...

Scoring a pair of goals and an assist on Wednesday, Conroy has tallied five points in his last three games, posting his third three-game point streak of the season ... After an 11-point December, Raiders centre Reid Gardiner has scored just five points since Jan. 1 ... The Raider's needn't worry about any team other than the Rebels for the conference's eighth and final playoff spot as the Moose Jaw Warriors, currently sitting 10th, are 21 points behind the Raiders and Rebels ... The Raiders are the league's least penalized team, posting just 684 penalty minutes ... Scoring the Chiefs lone goal on Wednesday, was Spokane native Keanu Yamamoto.

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