First things first, a huge thank you to both the Raiders and to Jarret Nelson and the staff at Camp Hope for a great day in Montreal Lake on Monday.
After an incredible spread of moose, fish, and much more for lunch, the crew took us out on the lake and demonstrated how to set a net under the ice.
Raider defenceman Jeremy Masella, from Phoenix, said he had never felt as cold as he did out on the lake that day, with temperatures below -20 and wind whipping across the surface.
“That was without a doubt the coldest I’ve ever been,” Masella said. “I couldn’t feel my feet.”
I’d like to say it gets better, but after spending my entire life in Saskatchewan, I couldn’t feel my feet either.
So far, the Raiders have found a lot of success in the two other Canadian divisions with an 8-2-1-1 record against the Central and a 2-1-1 record against the B.C. Division this season.
The team will hope this trend continues as the next six games will all be played against teams from these two divisions, starting in Red Deer Friday night. At some point, the team is going to need to get hot to put some points together and close the gap on Saskatoon, and this looks like a good time to do it.
From now and the next meeting between Prince Albert and Saskatoon on Feb. 2 at the Art Hauser Centre, the Raiders will be playing exclusively outside of the division, while the Blades have two games against Regina, one against Moose Jaw, and three outside of the East.
Congratulations to Sean Montgomery on his 250th WHL game on Wednesday night, all with the Raiders.
By my count, Montgomery has missed a total of 10 games over the last four seasons, dating back to his 16-year-old year in 2014-15. A model of consistency, Montgomery is currently on pace for career highs in both goals (15), assists (16), and points (31) this season.
All the talk last week was about team rosters like the ones Swift Current, Moose Jaw, and Regina had assembled after the trade deadline. With players like Kale Clague, Cam Hebig, Libor Hajek, Giorgio Estephan, Stuart Skinner, and Josh Anderson added to the mix, it was clear the arms race was on in southern Saskatchewan.
As the schedule would have it, the Raiders got to see each of these newly upgraded teams over the course of six days while the league was still buzzing about the acquisitions. Although Prince Albert was only able to pick up one win out of the three games, it looked to me like there was not a significant gap between the Raiders and any of the three opponents.
Just like they’ve done all season, the Raiders continue to find success by outworking their opponents.
After Saturday night’s game against Moose Jaw, Marc Habscheid quipped the all-20-year-old line of Curtis Miske, Jordy Stallard, and Regan Nagy had earned the nickname “The Pensioners” as the elder statesmen in the room.
The golden years don’t seem to be slowing the trio down, as Nagy has produced four assists, Miske two goals and three assists, and Stallard three goals and an assist for a combined 13 points in the last two games.
On Twitter: @Trevor_Redden
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