GAME 63 RECAP | Blades win streak stopped at seven, Raiders win 8-1
Saskatoon, SK – Chalk it up as just one of those days for the Bridge City Bunch.
The Saskatoon Blades seven-game win streak came to an end Sunday with an 8-1 loss to the Prince Albert Raiders SaskTel Centre. Despite the Blades holding a wide edge in shots and possession for much of the game, the result didn’t go their way.
It’s the club’s first loss since Feb. 24th, an overtime decision also against the Raiders. Their 12-game point streak also comes to an end.
Saskatoon can be proud of the season series finishing 7-2-1-0 against Prince Albert playing a big part into sitting third in the Eastern Conference.
Saskatoon still boasts 93 points and an impressive 44-14-4-1 record, just one point behind the Kamloops Blazers for third overall in the WHL.
The temperature of this contest ratcheted up immediately with physicality beginning in the opening moments of the game that helped to stir up tensions that lasted throughout.
Prince Albert opened the scoring midway through the first period thanks to 20-year old Keaton Sorenson who fired his first of his two goals. The reliable scorer was held pointless in Friday’s battle vs the Blades but finished with three points in this one.
Forward Brandon Lisowsky tied it up for the Blue and Gold just 43 seconds later, keeping the puck on a two-on-one chance and snapping it home. The snipe was the Toronto Maple Leafs draft pick’s 33rd of the season, matching his career-high with five games remaining in the campaign. In 60 games this season the Port Coquitlam, BC. product has 63 points.
Lisowsky said Imma take it from here 😤 @MapleLeafs pic.twitter.com/OiMVTGb7L1
— x – Saskatoon Blades (@BladesHockey) March 12, 2023
That would unfortunately be the high-point for the Blades in this one.
The Raiders regained a 2-1 advantage late in the first on forward Evan Herman’s 16th tally of the season. The Raider captain finished with two points on the night giving him 36 total in his final WHL season.
Prince Albert doubled their lead on Carter Anderson’s 11th goal of the year early in the second period. Thompson, MB’s own snapped a seven-game goalless drought to make it 3-1 for the visitors.
Adding salt to the wound was Raiders forward Hayden Pakkala to extend their lead to 4-1. The hard-nosed center’s eighth marker of the year gives him 21 points in 58 games.
The potent Blades power play generated chances late in the second but was unable to solve Prince Albert goaltender Tikhon Chaika, who finished with 32 saves for his 15th victory.
Defenseman Justice Christensen beat the buzzer for the Raiders in the dying moments of the middle frame, scoring his second of the season with less than a second remaining. Trailing 5-1 after 40-minutes, the Blades had a massive hill to climb in the third.
The wind however was taken out of the Blades sails heading to the third and Prince Albert added three more to arrive at the 8-1 final. It included Sorenson’s second of the game and team-leading 25th of the season, as well as singles from forwards Sloan Stanick and Harrison Lodewyk. Sorensen led all skaters with his pair of goals and three points.
Goalie Ethan Chadwick started in goal for the Blades, making five saves on nine shots. The Saskatoon product had won his previous five appearances. The other half off the tandem Austin Elliott came into the game after the fourth goal and made 12 saves on 16 shots.
With five games remaining, the Blades still have an opportunity to log their fifth 100-point season in franchise history.
The Blades next game is on the road on Wednesday, Mar. 15th against the Swift Current Broncos.
Puck drop is 7:00pm at the InnovationPlex.
Written by: Jonathan Hodgson