Merkley's 12th goal of the season lifts the Broncos to another home win
Jay Merkley had three points, including the game winning goal, to lead the Swift Current Broncos to a 4-3 win over the visiting Red Deer Rebels.
Merkley scored his second goal of the game with 9:04 left in regulation, only 31 seconds after Connor Bleackley had tied the game for Red Deer, to lift the Broncos to their 11th win in 15 games at home.
Landon Bow made 20 saves on 23 shots to improve to 8-2-0-1 during his breakout season. Patrik Bartosak kept the Rebels in the game but eventually suffered the loss with 42 saves on 46 shots.
Colby Cave and Julius Honka also scored for Swift Current, who improved to 11-2-0-2 at the Credit Union iplex this season. Wyatt Johnson and Rhyse Dieno also scored for the Rebels, who had won two straight, including a 2-1 upset win over the Medicine Hat Tigers Friday.
19-year-old defenseman Stephen Shmoorkoff made his debut in a Broncos uniform after being acquired from Edmonton on Thursday.
"It was great, especially in my first game to battle one out. It was a close game and it feels that much better when we got the win," said the Edmonton native.
The Broncos had lost five of their past six games, including a 3-1 loss to the Calgary Hitmen on Friday. The Broncos came out of the room flying tonight, outshooting Red Deer 19-4 in the first period and 46-23 overall.
"Yeah it was almost do or die," said the 6', 197-pound Schmoorkoff. "No one is happy when you lose a game, especially to Calgary. We felt like we had to win tonight and we put it on the line and did."
The Broncos remain in second spot in the East Division with a 17-11-0-3 record, while Red Deer dropped to 13-13-0-2.
The Broncos will be back at home Wednesday to host the last place Lethbridge Hurricanes (3-21-2-2) on Kurt’s KFC Teddy Bear, Toque and Mitt Toss night.