The Yorkton Bantam UCT Terriers collected three of a possible four points in their first action of the New Year thanks to a 7-3 home ice victory over the Swift Current Kabos Raiders on Saturday, followed by a 3-3 tie against the Weyburn Crescent Point Wings on Sunday.
The two results give the UCT Terriers second place in the South Division and a 15-4-1 record in SBAAHL play, seven points back of division leading Pilot Butte Prairie Storm (19-1-0) and six points ahead of the third place Estevan TS & M Bruins (11-7-3).
Seven different players scored for Yorkton in a 7-3 victory over the visiting Swift Current Kabos Raiders (1-18-1) on Saturday night at the Farrell Agencies Arena.
Keanan Sperling opened the scoring for the Terriers on the powerplay when he tipped the Cody Dubas blast past Swift Current goaltender Jeremy Brumwell for his sixth goal of the season and a 1-0 Terrier lead just over five minutes into the game.
It seemed as if the Raiders would escape to the locker room down by just one after 20 minutes despite being completely outplayed by the Terriers. However, that was not the case, as Carson Welke redirected a Kaleb Bulych shot past Brumwell for his 16th of the season with just 1:32 remaining in the first. A very late Yorkton powerplay resulted in the third Terriers goal of the opening frame. Keenan Taphorn banged a loose puck into the back of the net for his 17th goal of the season with just six seconds remaining to give the home side a 3-0 lead.
If the first period was all roses, the second period was all raspberries for the Terriers. Five straight penalties cut down the Terrier momentum and gave the visiting Raiders life. Swift Current leading scorer Tyde Hutchinson made it 3-1 with a beautiful backhand, forehand move to beat a sprawled out Austin Hilderman on a breakaway.
Hutchinson cut the Terriers lead to one with his second breakaway goal of the game, this time on the powerplay to make it 3-2. Swift Current’s Cade Price evened the score at three just 1:10 later, tapping the rebound past Hilderman for the Raiders second consecutive powerplay goal to make it 3-3 after 40 minutes.
3-3 was as close as the visiting Raiders would get however, as the UCT Terriers offence erupted with four goals in the final frame, one each by Brett Kemp (3rd), Carson Miller (18th), Kaeden Taphorn (6th) and Derrick Budz (9th) to give the Yorkton Bantam UCT Terriers a 7-3 victory.
While a 7-3 victory is always good to see, what’s not good to see was the lack of effort by the UCT Terriers in the second period; a period in which they were outplayed and out worked by a lesser team. Something that Head Coach Graham Garrett acknowledged in the post-game interview. “I think we just lost our focus in the second period,” said a frustrated Garrett. “Guys were undisciplined and lost respect for our opponent. It’s not the first time we’ve done it and we got to stop doing those types of things.”
“We thought we didn’t have to play. They outworked us and because of that they beat us in a period 3-0. A team that’s at the top of the standings losing to a team that’s at the bottom of the standings is all because of hard work. They did it, we didn’t.”
The Yorkton Bantam UCT Terriers were back in action on Sunday. The opponent: The Weyburn Crescent Point Wings (7-6-3), who, just like the Terriers, were coming off of a 7-3 Saturday night victory to open 2014.
Luke Schappert gave Yorkton a 1-0 lead late in the first period when he snapped his sixth goal of the season over the glove hand of Weyburn netminder Josh Dubiel.
The home town Terriers doubled their lead 2:57 into the second period when Rama import Cody Dubas blasted a shot from the point past Dubiel for his fifth goal of the season to make it 2-0.
The two goal lead was short-lived however, as Weyburn’s Kane Altwasser made it 2-1 less than three minutes after the Dubas goal when he tapped in a beautiful cross-crease pass from teammate Ben Hiltz.
A perfectly placed wrist shot by Yorkton’s Kaeden Taphorn doubled the Terrier lead to 3-1 with 4:41 remaining in the second period but just eight seconds later Tristyn DeRoose cut the lead in half when his shot trickled past Austin Hilderman and into the net to make it 3-2 after two periods of play.
Weyburn completed the comeback late in the third period on a Matthew Kesslering goal to make it 3-3. Dubiel then made sure his team would leave the Farrell Agencies Arena with at least one point as he turned aside shot after Terrier shot in the final five minutes of play. Final score: Yorkton UCT Terriers three, Weyburn Crescent Point Wings three.
Tie notwithstanding, the effort put forth by the UCT Terriers was something that satisfied their Head Coach, especially after the previous night’s second period collapse. “I thought we played a great game,” said UCT Terriers bench boss Graham Garrett. “They might have created five chances and they got a couple of bounces that went their way. We didn’t have any go our way. When you outshoot a team 50-18 and you’re tied 3-3 you’ve got to give somebody credit and that’s their goaltender.”
“You’ve got to applaud our effort as well but obviously sometimes goaltending can be the difference and today it was.”
The Yorkton Bantam UCT Terriers took on the Melville Millionaires at the Farrell Agencies Arena on Tuesday; however results were unavailable at press time.
The next action for the UCT Terriers will be Friday, January 10 when they visit the Saskatoon Generals for a 5:45p.m. start.
The next home game for the UCT Terriers is Sunday, January 26 against the basement dwelling Notre Dame Hounds at the Farrell Agencies Arena. Game time is set for 4:15p.m.