After being held to one goal on Saturday, the Lloydminster Bobcats broke out offensively in a 9-5 victory over the Drumheller Dragons on Wednesday night.
PHOTO: FIVEPENNY PHOTOS
The two teams combined for seven goals through the first thirty minutes of the contest, and no side had held a lead of more than one goal as the Bobcats led 4-3. That trend broke with less than seven minutes to go in the middle frame as Noah Bauld scored his second of the night and 14th of the season to push the Bobcats lead to two goals, which is where it stayed through 40 minutes.
From there, the Cats were able to extend the lead to three early in the third as Kevin Darrar took a feed from Troy Van Tetering and put it upstairs to make it 6-3 Bobcats. Former Cat Evan Tschumi responded for the Dragons with a nice wrist shot from in tight over the glove of net minder Alex Leclerc, but an offensive breakout from Alex Pernitsky nipped any potential comeback in the bud.
Having scored his third goal of the season – and second in four games – in the first period, Pernitsky added his second power play marker of the night at the 10:36 mark of the third. Just under two minutes later, the defenceman completed the hat trick as he drove a puck past Dragons goaltender Jonny Hogue to make it 8-4 for the home team. For Pernitsky, tonight was his first career AJHL hat trick, his first time scoring four points (adding an assist in the first period), and his fourth multi-point game.
Will Van Der Sloot would add another goal for the Dragons, but Van Tetering salted away the win pushing the lead to 9-5 late in the third. Van Tetering extended his point streak to five games tonight, with three goals and six assists in that span.
It was the Dragons opening scoring in the first as Jacob Schofield made it 1-0 13:01 into the game. The Bobcats struck back with a pair before the end of the opening frame as both Connor Odelein and Noah Bauld scored to make it 2-1.
In the second, it was a run of back-and-forth goals from Dragons forward Connor Boyd, Pernitsky, Dragons forward Levi Wunder, and Bobcats forward Eric Benshadle scoring in sequence before Bauld made it 5-3. Pernitsky's goal came on a man advantage after Dragons forward Trygve Many Guns was assessed a minor penalty for a blow to the head. After the play, Bobcats captain Taylor Mulder challenged Many Guns who answered the bell, and the two engaged in an impressive heavyweight tilt. The Dragons forward is listed at 6'4″, 240 lbs, while Mulder tips the scales at 215 lbs and also stands 6'4″.
With Pernitsky's two markers on the man advantage, the Bobcats finished the night two for three on the power play. The Dragons were held to no goals on three opportunities.
Although struggling to some extent, allowing five goals on 26 shots, Leclerc registered his 26th win of the season, the second highest total in the league.
The Bobcats next action comes this weekend with a two-game trip to Fort McMurray, taking on the Oil Barons on Friday and Saturday night at 8:00PM.