The Calgary Roughnecks ended their own streak of misery and kept the Saskatchewan Rush’s going on Saturday night.
After erasing an early deficit, the Roughnecks used a six—goal run, including five in a row in the third quarter, to roll over the Rush 17-12 at SaskTel Centre in Saskatoon. The Roughnecks had won just one of the past 11 games against Saskatchewan, including three straight losses, while the Rush suffered their third straight defeat after back-to-back road losses after the past two weeks. It was also the Roughnecks’ first win on the Rush’s home turf in Saskatchewan.
“Massive win for us,” said Calgary’s Curtis Dickson, who racked up 11 points (4 goals, 7 assists) on the night.
“Our first win in this building. A big win for us. Our offence hadn’t been clicking that well coming into this game and we knew we had to turn things around. We got our looks and buried them.”
The trio of Dickson, Dane Dobbie and Tyler Pace each had four goals and teamed up for a total of 28 points on the night.
Robert Church notched a pair of goals that helped push the Rush out to a 5-1 lead in the first quarter, and that’s when the Roughnecks started to reverse things. After a Dobbie closed the opening quarter, Calgary scored three goals in a span of 2:29 to start the second quarter and tie the game 5-5. Just 36 seconds later, Jeff Shattler bumped the Rush ahead 6-5, but Dickson put up a pair – the second coming with two seconds left in a power play – to leave the two teams deadlocked 7-7 at halftime.
Calgary tore up the Rush defence in the third quarter beginning with captain Dan McRae getting his shot to trickle across the goal line and give the Roughnecks their first lead at 8-7. Former Rush Riley Loewen capitalized on a slow Saskatchewan defensive change as he was left alone in the slot and finished the play off to make it 9-7.
Less than a minute later, Pace’s outside shot beat Rush goalie Evan Kirk and Calgary went up by three. Shortly after the ensuing faceoff, Saskatchewan defender Nik Bilic was called for a major penalty for elbowing and game misconduct as he banged into Calgary’s Zack Currier. The Roughnecks got one on the power play from Dickson and Dobbie then made it 12-7 as he snared a long-bomb feed from Mitch Wilde and slammed home a shot.
The Rush got one back on Church’s hat-trick tally with 1.6 seconds left in the third and Shattler connected on an off-speed shot 11 seconds into the fourth, but the Roughnecks’ offence continued to find answers in the final stanza, highlighted by two goals from Pace just 28 seconds apart to give him four on the night.
Former Rush Dan Taylor and Riley Loewen combined for three goals against their former club with Wilde adding to Calgary’s goal count. Roughnecks netminder Christian Del Bianco totaled 39 saves.
Church and Shattler both had hat tricks for Saskatchewan, while Ryan Keenan and Curtis each scored twice, and Mark Matthews added a single. Kirk ended the night with 21 saves.
Both teams are back in action next Saturday as the Rush are in Vancouver to take on the Warriors, while the Roughnecks head east to meet the Buffalo Bandits.
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