Saturday, September 15, 2012

Pats Drop First Game in Brandt Centre

 - Pre-Season Game # 3 

   Pats can't overcome Blades on home ice, losing 2-1
  
September 14, 2012 - From Regina Pats Web Site - www.reginapats.com
      
Game Recap
First Period

The opening minutes of the contest were a special teams battle.  The Pats had an early 5-on-3 advantage but couldn’t capitalize.  The Blades earned their own chance with the extra man, but goaltender Tegan Sacher stood strong to keep it scoreless.  The rink crew had to push the pause button midway through the first to repair a stanchion that came loose after a big hit along the boards.  The physical play continued through the frame, and despite some great scoring chances, the score remained tied at zeros through one.

Second Period

The second opened with a couple of fantastic opportunities.  At one end, Morgan Klimchuk just missed stuffing in his first of the preseason.  Right back the other way, Josh Nicholls was robbed by Sacher.  The rookie goalie left the game in the second after stopping all 16 shots he faced.  Matt Hewitt entered the game and was victimized by an unreal solo effort from Travis McEvoy who popped the water bottle to give the Blades a 1-0 edge through two periods.

Third Period

The third period opened with some flash as Chandler Stephenson finished off a gorgeous play from Klimchuk to knot the game at one, moments into the frame.  The game wouldn’t remain tied too long as Brett Stovin capitalized on a partial three on one to put Saskatoon back in front.  The Pats nearly evened things up at the ten minute mark, but Patrick Johnson made an unbelievable glove save over his back to maintain the 2-1 lead.  That save turned out to be a big one as the Pats wouldn’t be able to generate much more in the way of chances the final half of the period.

With his goose-egg over the first thirty minutes, Tegan Sacher dropped his goals against average to 0.66 on the pre-season, the lowest in the WHL.  His .980 save percentage is second highest.

“You can always do more, but as far as an audition for a hockey team, that was a pretty fine one.” – Head Coach Pat Conacher on Sacher’s preseason.

“Time of possession with the puck, Saskatoon had way more and I just thought we were chasing all night and it looked we were getting gassed at the end.” – Conacher on the Pats overall game.
 Next Game: Saturday -  September 15th vs. Saskatoon Blades (CKRM)