John Paddock returns to the Pats bench, leads team to 4-2 victory
Two days after Dave Struch was relieved of his coaching duties, John Paddock was back behind the bench as he lead the Regina Pats to a 4-2 victory in Moose Jaw.
Paddock had called Struch’s dismissal, whom he’d worked closely alongside for several seasons, difficult but necessary.
Tanner Howe continued to produce offensively for the Pats with the game-winning goal and an assist in the contest. Paddock has long stressed a quick start and he got one. The Pats captain Logan Nijhoff opened the scoring just 56 seconds into the game. Howe took the puck behind the Warriors goal and with a defender giving chase, flipped the puck out to a waiting Nijhoff who beat goaltender Carl Tetachuk gloveside, into the open cage.
Connor Bedard flashed some offensive brilliance on the second Pats goal as he danced through a pair of defenders and fired the puck on goal. Borya Vallis scored his second of the year by cashing in the rebound on the Bedard shot. Logan Doust’s first of the year on a two-on-one drew the Warriors to within a goal as the teams headed into the locker room for the second intermission.
The Warriors drew even 2:22 into the third period when 16-year old sensation Brayden Yager scored his 10th of the year, streaking down the right-wing and firing the puck over the outstretched catching glove of Matthew Kieper.
The Warriors continued to press for the go-ahead goal but Kieper slammed the door shut for the rest of the contest. Kieper finished the game with 42 saves for the Pats on 44 Warriors tries. Tetachuk impressed in goal for Moose Jaw turning aside 30 of 33 shots on goal. Tanner Howe fired a seeing-eye shot that snuck through Tetachuk to give the Pats a 3-2 lead. Cole Carrier later added an insurance marker to make it a 4-2 game.
The Pats are back in action on Tuesday night when they visit the Medicine Hat Tigers.
The Warriors are in Prince Albert on Wednesday night to battle the Raiders.