The ENMAX Centre was packed Friday night as the Lethbridge Hurricanes faced the Regina Pats in front of a sold out (5,378) crowd, for the two teams last match up of the regular season.
Both teams are looking to take home every point they can in the last stretch of the regular season, as they both look to punch their ticket to the playoffs. Ahead of the game Regina Pats Captain Connor Bedard said one of the biggest pieces of advice he has received over the past year he tries to follow is to stay present.
“You play so many games, and there is plenty of outside noise, you have to focus on what is in your room and what you can control,” Bedard said. “I think that has been a big message to me from people and from myself is just to kind of stay present and focus on what you can do everyday.”
Since returning from the World Juniors at the beginning of the year, Bedard and the Pats, have continued to play in sold out arenas across the league. When asked about how he felt having people fill these venues to see him play, the Pats centremen said he doesn’t think about it as they are coming for him.
“We have felt a lot of support at home and on the road as well. It has been a cool experience though to have a lot of sold out barns, and it has been a lot of fun.”
After being kept off the score sheet the last time Pats visited a the sold out ENMAX Centre, Bedard was the first to score in Fridays game adding to his 124 point season.
Not all at Fridays game came to see the Pats Captain, as left winger for the Regina team Zack Stringer saw his second game against his hometown team. Ahead of Fridays action Stringer said it is always a good feeling to come back home and be on the ice.
“It is awesome to be able to have my friends and family in the stands to watch,” Stringer said. “It was an awesome feeling last time we were here.”
Stringer would assist linemate Drew Englot in finding the back of the Canes net during the first period in-front of his hometown crowd. The Pats took the lead twice during the game, first heading into the second period leading the home team 3-1. The Canes came back in the second to tie it up 3-3, for the Pats to find the back of the net again in the second leading the Hurricanes 4 – 3 into the third. With 2:22 left on the clock in the third the Hurricanes found their way back onto the score sheet, tying the game up 4 – 4 and forcing three on three sudden death over time.
The Hurricanes found the back of the net with 1:20 left in the extra frame, with Logan McCutcheon winning the game for the home team.