Pats season on the line following 4-2 loss in Saskatoon


The Regina Pats were moments away taking a 3-0 series lead against the Saskatoon on Tuesday night before Blades staged a comeback to win Game 3.

Saskatoon now find themselves in control of the series thanks to 4-2 win on Friday night in front of 12,098 fans at SaskTel Centre.

The Blades leads the series for the first time, three games to two.

Connor Bedard collected both goals for the Pats, increasing his post-season total to ten.

After slow starts last weekend, the Blades were able to utilize the home-crowd advantage to start Game 5.

In a span of 1:40, the Blades jumped out to a 2-0 lead. Vaughn Watterodt capitalized on a Pats turnover and opened the scoring.

The Pats were penalized shortly after the goal, setting the stage for an Egor Sidorov’s power play goal.

Bedard would close the gap for the Pats on the extra-man advantage before the end of the first period.

It appeared the Blades extended the margin to 3-1 midway in the second period thanks to Tanner Molendyk, but the goal was called waved off due to goaltender interference.

Saskatoon would soon pick up their two-goal advantage with Conner Roulette collecting his first goal of the series.

After 40 minutes, the Pats found themselves down 3-1.

The Pats comeback was kickstarted by Bedard’s second goal of the game, which came on a delayed penalty call against Saskatoon, allowing Alexander Suzdalev to replace Pats goalie Drew Sim on the ice. Suzdalev had an assist on the goal.

Sam Oremba came close to tying the Pats around the midway point of the period. The missed opportunity would come back to haunt Regina shortly afterwards as Saskatoon took advantage of a Pats turnover and created a odd-man rush that saw Sidorov finish it off with a one-timer, and a 4-2 advantage.

Saskatoon now has the opportunity to finish off the Pats on Saturday and move on to the second round of the playoffs.

Sim made 29 saves in the loss.

Suzdalev and Stanislav Svozil each had a pair of assists.

Both teams were 1 for 2 on the power play.

After the game, Assistant Coach Ken Schneider said the Pats dug themselves into a hole with their start that led to a 2-0 deficit.

“It’s not the way you want to start especially in a tough series like this in the opponents rink.”

At the end of the contest as the final buzzer sounded off, the Pats aggression was visible, which is something Schneider likes.

“I like the passion we showed at the end of the game, a little frustration, because that only tells me we’re going to be ready to play tomorrow night.”

One night after the Blades earned their first home ice win of the series, the Pats will be attempt the same feat.

Coverage of Saturday’s game on 620 CKRM begins with the pre-game show at 6:10, Dante De Caria will have the play-by-play beginning at 7:00.

It’s expected to be a sold-out crowd at the Brandt Centre for Saturday’s game.

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