It was an opportunistic win for the Prince George Cougars.
In the first of a three-game road trip, the Cougars (5-1-1) stole two Western Hockey League points from the Kootenay Ice (1-5) at Western Financial Place in Cranbrook on Wednesday. The Ice outplayed the Cougars for most of the game, holding the edge on the shot clock 39-17 but it was the Cougars skating away with a 5-4 win.
Tonight, the Cougars will look for a better overall game with a similar end result in Lethbridge against former Cats' goaltender Ty Rimmer and the Hurricanes (2-5).
Prince George held 2-0 and 3-1 leads Wednesday by taking advantage of Ice mistakes.
Dallas Ehrhardt, Colin Jacobs, Caleb Belter, Brett Roulston and Jari Erricson scored for the Cougars while Kyle O'Connor, Erik Benoit and Joey Leach replied for the Ice. It was Roulston's first WHL goal and Erricson's first goal of the season.
The breakaway goal by Jacobs in the first period, giving the visitors a 2-0 lead, extended the 19-year-old's point streak to seven games (seven goals, six assists).
After the game, Cougars head coach Dean Clark said his team was lucky to pull out of Cranbrook with two points.
Brett Zarowny was solid in the Cougars' net as he ran his record to 4-1. Wyatt Hoflin took the loss in the Ice net, despite only giving up one goal (to Erricson) in the third period. Mackenzie Skapski played the first 40 minutes in the Ice net, giving up four goals on 11 shots. The Ice trailed 4-3 after two periods.
After the Ice tied the game 4-4 on Leach's first goal of the season early in the final period, the Cougars restored their lead when Jake Mykitiuk dug the puck out from along the boards, sending it out to Erricson, alone in the slot, who wasted no time firing it past Hoflin.
The Ice had a chance to tie the game when Cougars' centre Zach Pochiro took a five-minute major for checking from behind but the Cats' penalty killers fended off the Ice attack.
Clark called rookie defenceman Tanner Lishchynsky the Cats best player for the second straight game.
After tonight's game in Lethbridge (6 p.m. PST), the Cougars wrap up their road trip Saturday in Medicine Hat against the Tigers (3-4-1) at 6:30 p.m. PST.