Game 4 of Regina Pats and Saskatoon Blades playoff series had a different script than Game 3 but it ended with the same result, a 4-3 overtime win for the Blades.
Jake Chiasson scored 7:20 into the extra frame to tie the series at 2-2.
Connor Bedard had two goals for Regina.
Unlike in Game 3 where the offensive chances developed early in the game, defence dominated the beginning stages of the game with no scoring in the first period.
Saskatoon was not able to find the back of the net, but they found the iron as Josh Pillar and Trevor Wong both hit the post.
In the second period, the Blades continued to be denied by the goalie’s best friend as Josh Lisowsky was the third Saskatoon player to ring one off the post.
On their third power play attempt of the game, the Blades wasted little time, seven seconds into the extra-man advantage, Wong found Egor Sidorov across the ice who released a one-timer to open the scoring.
Regina answered back before the end of the period on a power play of their own, as Bedard tied the game for Regina with 32 seconds remaining.
It was an explosive start into the third period for the Pats as they took the lead 13 seconds in, following a chance by Tanner Howe off the opening faceoff, Bedard cleaned up the loose rebound to put Regina ahead for the first time.
40 seconds later, Howe extended the Pats lead to a pair after he deflected Stanislav Svozil’s pass past Blades goalie Ethan Chadwick.
Blades Head Coach Brennan Sonne called a time-out and it seemed to re-energize his team. Josh Wiens began the comeback shortly afterwards as he trimmed the deficit to one.
Saskatoon would tie the game at the midway mark of the period as defenceman Charlie Wright positioned himself in front of the Pats net and capitalized on the rebound chance.
For the third time in the series extra-time was required. The Blades had the first golden opportunity to end the contest but it was Sidorov’s turn to hit the post for Saskatoon.
Chiasson would end the game as he took the puck from the side-boards and fired a shot that snuck by Pats goalie Drew Sim.
In the loss, Sim ended up making 33 saves for Regina.
Chadwick made 23 saves in the Saskatoon victory.
Both teams had a power play goal, the Pats were 1 for 2 on the extra-man advantage while the Blades were 1 for 3.
After the game, Pats Head Coach John Paddock felt his team recovered from a slow start but Saskatoon’s ability to force some turnovers took a toll on the Pats.
“I think we had some soft puck plays and so forth that allowed them to keep the puck in when we should have it out, that sort of builds and builds and gives them some momentum.”
Paddock added the Blades are creating more scoring opportunities around the crease area.
“From a bad angle, through a screen, goalie has to make a save, the puck is lying in somebody’s feet, that’s where they’ve done a better job than us.”
Bedard said with the Blades defensive efforts limiting odd man rushes for the Pats, they had to find different ways to create offence.
“They’re a puck possession team, we got to figure out, how can we create.”
Sonne pointed out that the series between the two teams has already been filled with momentum swings.
“Momentum is a real funny thing, because it could change shift to shift, period-to-period, and it can certainly shift game-to-game, I don’t how much momentum carries from game-to-game frankly, I think for us it’s about resetting, getting home, and focusing on what we have to do Game 5 wise. ”
Chiasson believes it was important for the Blades not to get down on themselves after dropping the first two games of the series at the SaskTel Centre.
“It was just important for us to bounce back, trust the team that we are, lots of success in the regular season, and for us, it was just playing that way and coming into this building and making a statement as best as we can.”
So far in the first four games of the series, the road team has claimed victory in each contest.
The Pats hope that trend continues on Friday night, when Regina looks to pick up their third straight win at the SaskTel Centre when the two teams meet in Game 5.
620 CKRM will have coverage beginning with the pre-game show at 6:10, Dante De Caria will have the play-by-play beginning at 7:00.