The Red Deer Rebels are now 5 and 3 after a 5-4 win over the Kootenay Ice in Cranbrook, B.C. Thursday night.
It was the Rebels' second victory in a row following a 4-1 triumph over the Everett Silvertips in Red Deer October 10. The win puts the Rebels in first place in the WHL’s Central Division, two points up on the Medicine Hat Tigers.
The first period of Thursday’s game saw Red Deer strike first with a goal from Reese Johnson at 3:28 to put the visitors up 1-0. Then, a Colton Kroeker tripping penalty for Kootenay led to a Red Deer power play goal for Mason McCarty at 10:10 to make it 2-0 Rebels. Less than three minutes later, McCarty earned his second of the night for Red Deer, scoring at 12:54 to put the Rebels up 3-0 heading into the first intermission.
The second period was all Kootenay however. Vince Loschiavo scored at 1:52 to finally put the home team on the board, cutting Red Deer’s lead to 3-1. Just over a minute later, the Ice struck again with a goal from Colton Veloso at 2:53 to tighten the Rebels' lead to 3-2 after forty minutes.
In the third, Red Deer restored its two goal lead when Kristian Reichel scored on the power play at 6:35 to make it 4-2 Rebels. However, the Ice responded quickly with an unassisted goal from Alec Baer at 9:09 to make it 4-3 Red Deer with just over half a period to play.
The Rebels regained their two-goal lead once again when Mason McCarty scored his third of the night at 17:51 to make it 5-3 Red Deer. Soon afterwards, the Ice pulled their goalie and it would pay off as Colton Kroeker scored with just seven seconds remaining to make it a 5-4 final in Red Deer's favour.
Shots on net were 31-29 Kootenay, with Rebels goalie Lasse Petersen saving 27 of 31 shots on the night, while Kootenay’s Kurtis Chapman saved 24 of 29.
Next up for the Rebels is a game this Saturday when they host the Saskatoon Blades. It’s a 7 p.m. face-off at the Enmax Centrium with the pre-game LIVE on 106.7 The Drive starting at 6:30.
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