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

Sylvan Lake and area residents vent frustration over rural crime

Justice Minister Doug Schweitzer visited Sylvan Lake Thursday as part of a rural crime tour

Sylvan Lake Town Council keep utility rates the same for gas and electricity

Council defeated the motion to increase the ATCO gas rate at the Oct. 15 meeting

Sylvan Lake RCMP arrest man in Fox Run area hit and run

The arrest was made with the help of information provided by alert Sylvan Lakers

Pilot project proposed for Sylvan Lake and Rimbey RCMP

Chief Superintendent Shahin Mehdizadeh spoke about the project at Tuesday’s meeting of council

Town of Sylvan Lake announces new community bus

The CARE-a-van is available for both for-profit and non-profit organizations

VIDEO: Alberta teen found guilty of shooting German tourist, leaving him paralyzed

The boy, who cannot be publicly identified, was from the Stoney Nakoda First Nation

Leaders pour it on with rallies, boosts for candidates as campaign reaches peak

The federal election campaign has reached a crescendo

Not a political question: Thunberg calls for climate action in Alberta

Edmonton police estimated the size of the crowd at about 4,000

Rebels drop third straight against Oil Kings

Rebels have given up 19 goals, scord 2 in three games

Zantac, the over-the-counter heartburn drug, pulled in Canada, U.S.

Health Canada also investigates possible carcinogen in some ranitidine drugs

Greta Thunberg calls for climate action in Alberta, but doesn’t talk oilsands

Swedish teen was met with some oil and gas industry supporters who came in a truck convoy

Scheer denies spreading ‘misinformation’ in predicting unannounced Liberal taxes

Conservative leader had claimed that a potential NDP-Liberal coalition could lead to a hike in GST

Kawhi Leonard, former Toronto Raptor, welcomed back to Vancouver at pre-season game

Fans go wild at pre-season game between L.A. Clippers and Dallas Mavericks at Rogers Arena

Greens and NDP go head to head on West Coast; Scheer takes fight to Bernier

Trudeau turns focus to key ridings outside Toronto after two days in Quebec

Most Read