Bobcats centre Jordan Borysiuk and Pats counterpart Brett Rylance face off in the Knights of Columbus zone. JAMIE HARKINS LLS PHOTO
A perfectly called timeout helped the Lloydminster Bandit Energy midget AAA Bobcats to a bounce-back effort, but it didn’t lead to a win.
The Bobcats (3-15-2) dropped a 4-2 decision to the Edmonton Knights of Columbus Pats (10-9-1) at the Centennial Civic Centre on Sunday evening.
Both clubs skated to a 1-1 tie through the opening 20 minutes of the contest, but a Pats pushback in the second period looked to be taking hold until the Bobcats coach called for a 30 second break.
“The timeout was more to calm our guys down and just let us know that we were still in the game,” said Bobcats captain Matthew Mohrbutter. “We didn’t really need to change much. We just needed to get better from there.”
Bobcats forward Jacob Biensch opened the scoring 5:27 into a evenly played first period after a Pats defender lost the puck in a mix-up with the linesman along the boards, leading to an undefended cross-ice pass from Jack Bygrove to his wing for the one-timer.
Pats defenceman Cordell Coleman got the marker back about a minute-and-a-half later through picking up a failed Ross Hawryluk covering attempt at the top of his crease, and poking the puck into a low corner.
It took about 18 minutes of back and forth play before Bobcats right wing Austin Saint restored their lead by popping a Jordan Borysiuk rebound past Pats goalie Braedan Stephen.
The Pats grabbed the reins after the marker boxing out any attempted Bobcats rush, and peppering Hawryluk with shots on their possessions.
Pats forward Jake Aston then evened the contest with 6:39 remaining in the middle frame.
The Bobcats regained their composure after the ensuing timeout, but a late second period goal by Massimo Neri forced them to play comeback for the final 20 minutes.
“We bounced back from it,” said Mohrbutter. “We actually had a really good third. Coming out they had some momentum, but we shut it down early and that’s just what we needed to do.”
The Bobcats have a busy weekend ahead of them. The club will host the Canadian Olympic women’s hockey team (5-3-1 in Alberta Midget Hockey League action this season) on Friday at the Centennial Civic Centre.
The game is part of the Esso Series schedule, which sees the national women’s team visit each of the Alberta Midget Hockey League teams in a regular points match as they prepare for the Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, this February.
“They’re going to be good and fast, but obviously we’ve got some bigger bodies than them,” said Mohrbutter.
“If we just use our bodies against them, we’ll have a chance at winning. It’s going to be a tough game. They’re going to be good.”