Dallon Melin scored the first goal of the 2019/2020 WHL season for the Red Deer Rebels on home ice against the Edmonton Oil Kings. (Todd Colin Vaughan/LACOMBE EXPRESS)

Red Deer Rebels fall to Edmonton in home opener 4-2

Red Deer will play the second of a home and home on Sunday

Early on in training camp, Rebels captain Dawson Barteaux said the this year’s young Red Deer Rebel squad was going to surprise people in the Western Hockey League (WHL).

With their home opener being against the Canadian Hockey League (CHL) eighth-ranked Edmonton Oil Kings — the Rebels would need to start surprising right away.

The Rebels came into their home opener after going 1-3-1-0, while the Oil Kings finished 6-1-0-1 but it would be the Rebels who would come out applying the most pressure when Dallon Melin knocked in a rebound for the Rebels first goal of the year.

The Oil Kings, however, would quickly reestablish why their were the WHL Central Divisions best team last year, scoring two goals — one by captain Scott Atkinson and one with just 14 second left in the period by Josh Williams — putting Edmonton up 2-1 heading into the first break.

“I thought we had a good start and then they scored on the powerplay and took away the momentum,” Rebels Forward Brett Davis said.

The second period lacked the excitement of the first, with only the Oil Kings managing to find the back the net when Atkinson took a pass from Williams to score his second of the game.

“I thought the second period put us on our heels,” Rebels Coach Brent Sutter said. “After they got that powerplay goal it took us awhile to regroup again.”

The Rebels would head into the third down a pair of goals and needing to rekindle their early offensive success. They would that success with six to play in the period after a more physical brand of hockey eventually led to Brett Davis roofing a shot from the slot to put Red Deer within a goal.

“A team motto we have is to always finish checks on the ice. You can tell the crowd gets into it more when we do that and I think we fed off that in third which led to us playing a lot heavier and better,” Davis said.

The Oil Kings would, however, quickly shut down the Rebel’s hopes for a comeback after David Kope jammed in a loose puck in front of Rebels netminder Ethan Anders.

The Rebels would pull Anders for the remaining two minutes in the game — but Red Deer was unable to muster a push, leading to a 4-2 Oil Kings win.

The Rebels will head to Edmonton tonight to play the second half of a home and home — which is two out of eight meetings against Edmonton this season. Red Deer will play at home again against Calgary on Sept. 28.

“It’s the first game. There are things we obviously have to work on but it is a good test for our kids to see where they have to be at,” Sutter said.



todd.vaughan@lacombeexpress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

County of Wetaskiwin concerned about provincial policing discussion

Lack of detail, lack of answers discussed at council Oct. 8

Rainbow Saddleback faces 15 break and enter related charges

Maskwacis, Wetaskiwin men charged by RCMP in relation to break and enters

Five things you should know about Impaired Driving

Too many risks, no rewards for impaired driving

Pigeon Lake re-zoning defeated by 2-5 county council vote

County of Wetaskiwin council denies Frank Dyck’s re-zoning

VIDEO: #MeToo leader launches new hashtag to mobilize U.S. voters

Tarana Burke hopes to prompt moderators to ask about sexual violence at next debate

Maskwacis RCMP seek public assistance to locate missing female

Maskwacis RCMP are asking for public assistance to locate 21 year-old Kiona… Continue reading

Alberta to join B.C.’s class-action lawsuit against opioid manufacturers, distributors

B.C. government claims opioids were falsely marketed as less addictive than other pain meds

VIDEO: Trudeau, Singh posture for ‘progressive’ votes while Scheer fights in Quebec

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, whose party has been on the rise in recent polls, is campaigning in Toronto

Advance voter turnout up 25% for first two days: Elections Canada

Two million people voted Friday and Saturday

In the news: Sprinting to the election finish line and anger amid Manitoba storms

First Nations residents forced to evacuate their Manitoba homes after a recent snowstorm

‘Save the kids!’ Dorian survivor tells the harrowing story of his Canadian wife’s death

Family held a funeral and placed Alishia Liolli’s remains in a niche at a cemetery in Windsor, Ont.

Singh says NDP would form coalition with the Liberals to stop Tories

Singh was in a Liberal-held riding Sunday afternoon in Surrey where he was pressed about his post-election intentions

PHOTOS: Kipchoge becomes first runner to dip under 2 hours for marathon

Olympic champion and world record holder from Kenya clocks 1 hour, 59 minutes and 40 seconds

Most Read