It was home sweet home for the Red Deer Rebels, beating the Kootenay Ice 6-4 Friday night, after an unsuccessful five-game road trip.
Even though it wasn’t pretty and against the last place team in the WHL, they’ll take it.
“It looked like a first-game back from a long road trip and I just thought we were sloppy in a lot of areas,” said Rebels GM/Head Coach Brent Sutter.
“I didn't like the goals, I didn’t like any of the penalties we took, but we found a way to score six goals and win a game.”
Rebels went 1-3-0-1 on their recent road trip, winning their only game against the Prince George Cougars 3-2 in a shootout.
At this point of the season, the Rebels need every point they can get with the Calgary Hitmen hot on their tails.
“We got to play our game. We know they’re the team right behind us and like I said (before) this probably is our biggest weekend of the season,” said Rebels Forward Austin Glover.
To the delight of Sutter and his team, the Hitmen dropped their Friday night game against the Medicine Hat Tigers 5-4 and are now four points behind the Rebels.
Rebels will have a chance to separate themselves even farther from the Hitmen when they host the division rival tomorrow night.
It won’t be easy said Sutter, especially if they play like they did on Friday.
“We need to be better tomorrow (Saturday) night, because the opponent we play is a very good opponent,” said Sutter.
Akash Bains, Cameron Hausinger and Austin Glover were the Rebels most effective line on Friday combining for six points.
Glover contributed two goals and an assist and said he felt good playing alongside those two.
“They’re young and they play with some energy so they actually made my job pretty easy tonight,” said Glover.
“They went in, got on the forecheck and turned some pucks over.”
Game one of a back-to-back series with the Hitmen starts at 7 p.m. Saturday night at the Centrium.