LETHBRIDGE – In a game that went back, and forth, and back again the Lethbridge Hurricanes lost late on Saturday, Feb. 9, 6-5 to the Prince Albert Raiders.
With the top team in the Western Hockey League in town, the Hurricanes started the game well, believing they had the first goal of the game thanks to Jackson Shephard, but it was waved due to goaltender interference.
Wouldn’t take long for Lethbridge to get on the board for real, however, as Koletrane Wilson pinched in from the point and fed Jake Elmer out front to make it 1-0 at 5:42 of the 1st period.
The Raiders pulled even later in the period, thanks to Eric Pearce’s sixth goal of the season.
1-1 is how things would stand after the opening frame, with the Hurricanes holding the end in shots 10-8.
Parker Kelly scored on the power play to give Prince Albert a 2-1 lead over the Lethbridge early in the second period.
Less than six minutes later the Raiders went up 3-1 on the Hurricanes when Cole Fonstad buried his 25th of the season past Carl Tetachuk.
Midway through the second, the Hurricanes would get one back when Ty Prefontaine's second of the season just snuck past Raiders goaltender Boston Bilous to make it 3-2.
One of the hottest Lethbridge shooters, seriously, Igor Merezhko scored his fourth goal of the year to tie the game 3-3 at 13:53 of the 2nd.
The Hurricanes weren’t done there as the offensive explosion in the middle frame continued.
Jake Leschyshyn’s 30th goal of the season gave the Hurricanes a 4-3 lead a short time later but that lead was also short-lived, as the Raiders’ Sean Montgomery tied the game 4-4 with 1:10 left in the period. Prince Albert outshot Lethbridge 15-11 in the 2nd.
With the Raiders on the powerplay early in the third, it would be the Hurricanes striking when Leschyshyn stripped Bilous and wrapped the puck around into an open net.
But even before the Hurricanes would get comfortable with the 5-4 lead, the Raiders tied it back up 5-5 on the same power play.
With time ticking away and this one looking like it might head to overtime, Prince Albert had a different idea.
Fonstad’s second of the game with 6:37 to play put the Raiders up 6-5 and they would hang onto that lead despite a push at the end of the game by the Hurricanes.
Final shots finished at 37-34 in favour of Prince Albert, who also went 2-for-3 with the man-advantage. Lethbridge only had one powerplay on this night, and they couldn’t convert.
Following the loss, the Hurricanes record sits at 27-16-5-5.
Next up for the Hurricanes is a Central Division showdown with the Calgary Hitmen on Wednesday, Feb. 13.
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