Rebels Forward Alex Morozoff scored the winning goal in another overtime game that saw Red Deer win 4-3 against the Saskatoon Blades on Friday.
Defenseman and Washington Capitals prospect Alexander Alexeyev sent Morozoff the right pass and the rest was history. It was the 17-year-old’s second goal of the season.
“I just saw some open ice and I took a shot and it went in,” he said, adding he was excited to get the win for his team.
Forward Brandon Hagel found the back of the net twice for the Rebels.
The first goal happened in the middle of the first period with assists from Captain Reese Johnson and Jeff de Wit.
Hagel notched another one off after just under four minutes in the second with Alexeyev and Jacob Herauf assisting.
“I thought we were really, really good tonight,” said Hagel, who now has 12 goals this season.
“I think we responded well.”
Having Johnson on his line was ‘nice,’ he said.
“He’s a hardworking guy. He gets you the puck. He finds you. He’s a smart hockey player. It is always nice to have a guy like that on your line. You never know what is going to happen.”
Friday’s win comes as a relief to Red Deer after losing to the Medicine Hat Tigers on Wednesday.
“There was a little bit of a wake-up call in Medicine Hat but I think we came back here and knew what we had to do and I think that we did the job,” he said.
The game was penalty-free when de Wit scored at 11:01 in the second with Johnson assisting.
Both teams had equal records in the league at the beginning of the night, with 13 games played, eight wins and four losses.
Blades Forward Max Gerlach got the scoring started early for Saskatoon, at 3:55 into the game, with the first goal of the night.
But the Blades didn’t score again until the third period when Brandon Schuldhaus put another point on the board with an assist from Kirby Dach.
With a little more than two minutes left in the third, Dach notched one off with assists from Dawson Davidson and Schuldhaus. The night finished with 48-26 shots on goal for the Rebels.
Rebels Head Coach and General Manager Brent Sutter called the game the strongest all year, despite the Blades gaining on them in the third.
“(The Blades) got some momentum toward the end of the game,” he said. “We made a bad line change and created an odd-man rush for them and then they were only down a goal and we took some penalties.”
He added, “They did a good job throwing them off but overall it was a solid game we’ve had all year. Right from the opening faceoff.”
Sutter called Hagel a determined player.
“He’s got will, determination, drive – he wants to win,” he said. “He’s showing great leadership. All the older guys are. Our older core group have been fantastic with their leadership.”
The Rebels are on the road for the next five games. They play Kootenay Ice on Sunday in Cranbrook.