The Lloydminster Bobcats busted a nine game losing streak in style with a 4-2 victory over the Sherwood Park Crusaders at the Centennial Civic Centre Friday night.
Brady Barclay, Kobe Walker, Daniel Hilsendager, and Chasetan Braid had the goals for the Cats and Austin McGrath made 30 saves on 32 shots for his seventh win of the season.
With the game knotted at 2-2 after forty minutes, the Bobcats took to the power play early in the third period and were able to strike as Hilsendager took a feed from Rob Johnson at the point and blasted a one-timer past a screened Jake Morrissey and in for his fourth goal of the season to give the home team a 3-2 victory. Zach Webb had the second assist on the play, and the goal was the Cats second power play marker of the night.
As McGrath held down the fort behind his team, the Bobcats found an insurance marker later in the period as Webb went after a loose puck in front of Morrissey, forcing the goaltender out of his net to swat the puck out of harms way. It deflected up and found the stick of Braid who deposited it into the net to make it 4-2 for the Bobcats, the final score of the night. Webb and Johnson each picked up their second assist of the game on the play.
It was the Crusaders who jumped ahead in the first period of the game, as AJHL goal scoring leader Tyler Maltby found himself alone in front of the Bobcats net and ripped a shot over the blocker of McGrath and in for his 33rd goal of the season to make it 1-0. However, the Bobcats responded before the period was up.
On a late first period power play, Walker jammed a face off towards the Crusaders net, and Brady Barclay went to the goal where he was rewarded with a loose puck that he tucked past Morrissey to make it 1-1 with 1:58 to go in the opening frame. The goal was Barclay's first in 11 games, his 11th of the season, and his fifth in six games against the Crusaders.
In the second period it was the Bobcats who jumped in front for the first time when Barclay took a feed out of his own zone and busted the puck up ice into Crusaders territory before centring for Walker who banged it home to make it 2-1. Hilsendager was credited with the second assist, and the goal was Walker's 13th.
Sherwood Park brought the game back to 2-2 later in the period as Chase Torontow took a feed as he stepped out of the box on an expiring penalty behind the Bobcats defence and went in alone on McGrath, beating him with a crafty move to make it 2-2, setting the stage for an exciting third period.
The Bobcats will be back in action on Sunday afternoon as the Spruce Grove Saints come to the Civic Centre for a 2:30 matchup, All fans are invited to come out to the game and stay for the free family skate with the Bobcats afterwards on Civic Centre ice. The Bobcats will also be holding a Super Bowl party in the Civic Centre Auditorium after the game. If you can't make it to the rink, you can catch the call on Real Country 95.9 with pre game beginning at 2:15PM.
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