Finally hitting their stride after a rough eight-game losing skid, the Cru were back in action tonight, once again looking to beat a divisional opponent.
The Lloydminster Bobcats came to the Sherwood Park Arena looking to close the gap between them and the Crusaders. It’s an exciting time right now with these final divisional games having huge impacts on the final standings in the AJHL’s North Division.
Lets wrap this one up:
Both teams came flying out of the gate in an entertaining first 10 minutes of play, with both sides going back and forth. The game almost broke open when the Crusaders took a hooking penalty and the Bobcats hit a post on the sub-sequence power-play.
With 5 minutes left in the period number 13 for the Bobcats cut out front of the net making contact with Brandon Vogel’s head sending the goalie to the ice. The Crusaders were awarded a 5 minute power-play for goalie interference. The power-play started off great with Dylan Stewart scoring within the first minute off a nice feed from Ty Readman. However, they failed to generate any more chances with the remaining time.
It was a good start to the game coming off of the win Monday with the Cru generating more chances in the opening frame.
Although Brandon Vogel finished the first period after he was hit, he did not lead the Cru onto the ice for the second, instead, it was the affiliate goalie, Ben Rishaug.
The fast pace continued into the second period with the Crusaders and the Bobcats going end to end. Rishaug came in and held down the fort for the Cru making a number of good saves through the frame. His biggest save coming with 1:59 left in the period on a nice cross-crease save on a 2 on 1.
As often happens in hockey, a big save at one end leads to a goal at the other. This coming from Ryan Cox off a feed from Dylan Stewart giving the Cru a 2-0 lead going into the third. It was a good period for the Cru who won the period.
The third period started and instantly put fans on the edge of their seat with fast-paced action. It started with Tyson Gruninger with a nice solo effort laying a big hit in the corner, leading to a turnover and then sliding it five-hole.
The Cru were able to get another quick goal on the power play from Arjun Atwal off a nice tic-tac-toe play leading to him putting it high glove. The Bobcats answered back with 3 unanswered goals, 2 on the powerplay, to get the game close.
When needed, the penalty kill came up big for the Cru as they killed off a penalty with less than 3 minutes left in the game. In the end, it was a good game for the Cru as they were able to hold on to the win and look to make it 3 straight tomorrow.
- The Crusaders keep up the good effort they put on Monday to string together back-to-back wins.
- Ben Rishaug came into the game and made some good saves to get the Crusaders the win.
- The Crusaders outshot the Bobcats 41-34 and out-chanced them.
- There could be a concern as starting goalie Brandon Vogel didn’t finish the game after the first period. The depth in the crease remains a concern regardless heading into the playoffs, despite Rishaugs solid appearance.
- The Crusaders took too many penalties in the third period leading to the Bobcats scoring 2 powerplay goals to make it a close game.
The Crusaders will be looking to make it four wins in a row tomorrow night when they take on the Calgary Canucks, we’ll have a Cru Wrap right after the game!