Pats sweep home and home set with Brandon


On the strength of a three-goal second period, the Regina Pats were able to extend their winning streak to four games after a 6-3 win over the Brandon Wheat Kings.

Alexander Suzdalev led the Pats in scoring as he collected a hat trick.

Regina dominated the opening five minutes of the game and were able to grab the lead as Suzdalev got his first goal of the evening.

Brandon responded 56 seconds later as Nolan Ritchie scored on the first Wheat King shot of the game to draw even.

Nate Danielson and Evan Groening would add a pair of goals for Brandon as they led 3-1 after the opening 20 minutes.

But the final 40 minutes were dominated by the Pats as they scored five unanswered goals.

Tanner Howe  scored on the powerplay after a beautiful pass from Stanislav Svozil to cut the Pats deficit to one. Svozil  would deliver a powerplay goal of his own later in the period to tie the game at  3-3.

Suzdalev then scored his second goal of the game as the Pats were able to grab a 4-3 lead.

In the final frame, Suzdalev completed his hat-trick after a video review confirmed he scored his third goal of the game.

Connor Bedard would add an empty netter for Regina to complete the 6-3 win.

Following the game, Assistant Coach Ken Schneider says it was another resilient win for the Pats.

“We didn’t panic, we got better on the forecheck in the second and of course that created some opportunities for us on the power play. ”

The Pats Assistant Coach said the team’s forecheck was the focus in the final 40 minutes and noted a key neutral zone turnover created by Regina led to Suzdalev’s game winning goal.

One night after Drew Sim made 44 saves to lead the Pats to victory, White City product Kelton Pyne made 35 saves to earn the win and looked sharp in the final two periods.

Schneider was proud of the way Pyne battled back after a tough first period.

“Kudos to Kelton, he hung in there, and he fought his way back into the game.”

Suzdalev noted the Pats made some adjustments following the first period.

“I think just playing with some speed, creating turnovers, keep forechecking them. ”

He also thought that his third goal was in the net before a video review confirmed it.

“It made a different sound and it kind of went in there kind of weirdly so I thought it went in there for sure.”

Suzdalev now has 34 goals and 41 assists this season which leads all rookies in the Western Hockey League.

With four straight wins, the Pats have created a small cushion in the Eastern Conference. They sit in 6th spot with 59 points, which is four points ahead of Calgary, Medicine Hat and Swift Current.

Brandon remains three points out of a playoff spot following the two losses to Regina.

The Pats now have a little break before they begin a tough three game stretch at the Brandt Centre next weekend.

On Friday, the host the top team in the Eastern Conference, the Winnipeg ICE. The second place, Red Deer Rebels visit the Queen City on Saturday. To wrap up the weekend, the Saskatoon Blades travel to Regina to meet the Pats in a Sunday matinee affair.

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