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Cougars comeback to earn point in shootout loss to Blazers

James Doyle photo

The Prince George Cougars closed out 2021 by picking up a hard-fought point in a 4-3 shootout loss to the Kamloops Blazers on New Year’s Eve at the CN Centre.

The Cougars came from 2-0 and 3-1 deficits, including scoring late in the third to force overtime. Prince George’s coach liked what he saw from his group against the top team in the B.C. Division.

“That was a heck of a hockey game. The difference tonight was our discipline as we took too many penalties but other than that, it was a great effort,” said Cougars General Manager & Head Coach Mark Lamb.

The penalties turned out to be costly, as the Blazers scored twice on five power play  chances, including a four-minute man advantage in the first period. The Cougars couldn’t cash in on any of their four power plays.

Carlin Dezainde scored his first goal as a Cougar on a breakaway in the first period. Koehn Ziemmer scored in the middle frame and Riley Heidt lit the lamp in the final period of regulation. Ziemmer finished with two points and Ethan Samson had a pair of assists on Friday. Tyler Brennan stopped 32 of 35 shots through regulation and overtime.

Caedan Bankier had three assists for the Blazers, and they got goals from Quinn Schmiemann, Matthew Seminoff, and Daylan Kuefler. Dylan Garand, who made his first start since coming back from the World Junior Hockey Championship, made 30 saves in the Blazers’ crease.

Prince George managed to kill-off a Blazers’ power play in overtime to extend the game to the shootout. Bankier and Minten both scored in the skills competition for Kamloops. Koehn Ziemmer and Riley Heidt were the two Prince George shooters who failed to score.

It was a solid debut for Jonas Brøndberg, as the Danish defenceman had an assist and three shots on net in his Cougars debut.

Next Game: Saturday, January 1 at Kamloops, 7 p.m.

 

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