A split of home games on the week has left the Yorkton Terriers with a 2-2 record two weeks into their Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League season.
The Terrier loss came last Wednesday as Battlefords invaded the Farrell Agencies Arena and skated away with a 4-0 win.
The first period was scoreless in the game, but the North Stars broke it open with three in the second period. Blake Young scored the first on a powerplay with Igor Leonenko and Robin Carlson popping the next two.
Ryne Keller would complete the Battlefords scoring with a goal in the final 30-seconds of the game.
Casey Parker had the shut out for the Stars, turning away all 33 Terrier shots, while Yorkton’s Kale Thomson faced 26 in the loss.
Saturday the Terriers got back into the win column with a 3-2 home ice victory over Estevan.
The Terriers struck first when Zach Zadoroznuiak scored his first Junior goal 5:45 into the game.
Nolan Nicholas knotted the score on the powerplay at 9:27.
Chase Norrish scored the only goal of the second period to again give the home team a lead.
Darcy DeRoose scored at the 10:00 of the third to tie the score for the Bruins.
Jordan Ross would finally secure the Terrier win with the game-winner at 14:37.
Thomson had the win in the Terrier net facing 30-shots, while Matt Gibney took the loss facing 28.
Tyler Giebel, the game’s first star said the Terriers needed Saturday’s win coming off being shut out on home ice three nights earlier.
“Tonight was huge,” he said, adding he thought the team had great second and third periods, periods in which the forwards, defence and goaltender Kale Thomson all played well.
Giebel said the win doesn’t mean the Terriers are where they need to be to have a big season, but it was a step in the right direction.
“Every game you’re always trying to get better, you want to get better,” he said. “… We’ve got a long way to go, a lot of things to work on.”
Terrier Assistant Coach Casey O’Brien said he was just happy to see a better effort from the loss Wednesday.
“The most important thing tonight was seeing improvement from the last game,” he said, adding being shut out on home ice is not something a team wants to tolerate.
Giebel said the Terriers know the offence has struggled through the opening four games of the season, failing to score in two of those, but added it’s too early to mentally dwell on the lack of goals.
“I think the more you think about it, talk about, the more it gets to you,” he said, adding the solution is to put in the effort on the ice to score goals. “You’re not going to score if you don’t work hard.”
And Giebel said through four games there were times the Terriers were guilty of not working hard enough on offence. He said Saturday he thought the team did a better job of going to the net and giving the Bruin goaltender some traffic to find the puck through.
O’Brien said the Terriers have to make sacrifices to score.
Eighty-five per cent of our goals last year were in the blue paint,” he said, adding to be successful the Terriers have “to get in the greasy spots” where they can capitalize on screened shots and grabbing rebounds.
And while not suggesting it was an excuse, the Terriers are re-adjusting on offence having graduated their top three scorers from last season, said Giebel.
“It always takes a while for guys to get used to each other,” he said.
The Terriers will try for some revenge on the Stars as they again host Battlefords Friday at the Farrell Agencies Arena.
Saturday Yorkton heads to Weyburn.
Then Tuesday Humboldt rolls into Yorkton to face the Terriers.