DRUMHELLER, AB (January 21, 2022) – Despite a frantic finish that saw the Brooks Bandits nearly tie the game in the final minute, the comeback fell just short, and the Drumheller Dragons held on for a 5-4 win on Friday at the Memorial Arena.
It was only the Bandits (40-3-1) third regulation loss in 43 games this season.
Brooks scored first, as defenceman Wes Turner (Holy Cross) redirected a left circle pass from Noah Hackett (Niagara) at 10:08 to make it 1-0 Brooks. But the Bandits were called for a roughing penalty on the play, so Drumheller went on the powerplay and evened up the game as Hayden Prosofsky cleaned up a rebound to make it 1-1 just 20 seconds after Turner scored. Shots in the 1st were 12-8 Brooks.
The Dragons took the lead at 5:20 of the 2nd, as forward Ty Daneault scored on a forehand shot from the left circle to make it 2-1. Drumheller went up 3-1 at 6:26 as Alexey Trischuk fired in a left wing shot from the left circle. Brooks would get one back at 10:43 on the powerplay, as Hackett sniped a top right corner goal to cut the lead to 3-2. Shots in the 2nd were 18-10 Brooks.
The 3rd period started great for Brooks, as forward TJ Hughes (Merychurst) took a left circle pass from Turner and slid a backhand shot into the Dragon net just 59 seconds into the frame to tie the game 3-3. However, Drumheller reclaimed their two-goal lead, with Kiano Robinson and Kody Willick scoring at 5:02 and 7:54.
Bandits forward Devin Phillips (Holy Cross) battled for a rebound from a McAllister right circle shot, and tucked in his 16th of the season to cut the Dragon lead to 5-4 with just over 11 minutes to play. Despite Bandits goaltender Ethan Barwick coming up with some clutch saves on a few Dragons odd-man rushes, Brooks was unable to solve Dragon goaltender Eric Ward in the dying minute. Shots in the 3rd were 15-11 Drumheller, but overall favoured Brooks 41-33.
The Bandits will look to get back in the win column on Sunday when they host the Camrose Kodiaks at the Centennial Regional Arena. Game time is 4:00 pm.