The Regina Pats were unable to clinch a playoff spot on Friday night as they were defeated by the Moose Jaw Warriors 9-5.
Connor Bedard picked up his eighth hat trick of the season, and added a pair of assists for a five-point night.
Riley Ginnell and Alexander Suzdalev also scored for the Pats in the loss.
Jagger Firkus scored a hat-trick of his own for Moose Jaw.
Regina opened up the scoring in the first period as Bedard finished off a tic-tac-toe passing play with Tanner Howe and Suzdalev.
Moose Jaw answered back with three goals in the first period. Josh Hoekstra scored a short-handed goal to even up the score at 1-1. The Warriors took the lead when Ryder Korczak picked up his rebound from the backboards and beat Pats goalie Drew Sim to give Moose Jaw their first lead. Firkus would close the scoring in the opening period with a breakaway goal.
In the second period, the Warriors extended their advantage with a pair of goals that were created off a pair of Pats turnovers. After the fifth Moose Jaw goal, Sim was replaced by Kelton Pyne in the Pats crease.
After Moose Jaw replied with their sixth straight goal, Bedard cut into the Pats deficit with a pair of goals. First he banged home a loose rebound and then on his third goal of the night, he took a drop pass from Zack Stringer and fired home his 66th goal of the season.
But 19 seconds later, Atley Calvert scored for the Warriors to give them a 7-3 edge after 40 minutes.
The two sides would trade two goals apiece in the final period to make the final 9-5.
Moose Jaw outshot Regina 40-26. Each team had scored on the powerplay with the Warriors going 1/2 while the Pats were 1/4.
After the game, Assistant Coach Ken Schneider felt the Pats game dropped off a strong start.
“I thought the first 8-10 minutes we were pretty good, but the powerplay killed us, the short-handed goal changed the momentum of the game and we really never recovered from that. ”
He added the Regina goalies were in tough on Friday night with the amount of odd-man rushes the Warriors had.
“In fairness to both of our goalies, they were facing breakaways, two on ones, three on ones the entire night.”
Regina’s magic number of clinching a playoff spot is now down to one after the Swift Current Broncos were defeated by the Red Deer Rebels on Friday night 2-0. The Pats need a point or a Broncos to lose one of their remaining four games in order for Regina to reach the postseason.
Elsewhere on the out of town scoreboard, the Pats didn’t get much help with Lethbridge defeating Calgary 6-4 and Medicine Hat picked up a 7-2 win over Edmonton. The Hurricanes lead the Pats by six points for 5th spot in the East. The Pats now hold a three-point edge on the Tigers for 6th spot.
On Saturday night, the Pats and Warriors will close out their season series as Regina gets another chance to clinch a playoff spot.
Coverage on 620 CKRM begins with the pre-game show at 6:35, Dante De Caria will have the play-by-play beginning at 7:00.