Connor Ungar made 43 saves, plus three more in the shootout, but it wasn’t enough on Friday night.
The Warriors lost 2-1 in a shootout to the Calgary Hitmen in a back-and-forth, playoff type game at the Moose Jaw Events Centre.
“Both teams were playing hard, it was a big game for the standings and it could have went either way,” Warriors captain Denton Mateychuk said.
The loss puts the Warriors just one point ahead of the Hitmen for fourth place in the Eastern Conference.
It was a goaltending duel with Ethan Buenaventura making 35 saves in the win for Calgary.
Mateychuk said Ungar made sure the Warriors had a chance to win the game.
“When you’ve got goaltending behind you like that, you play really confidently and you just try to back him up and not give up too many chances,” he said.
Warriors assistant coach Gord Burnett said overall the team didn’t have their best game.
“We were a little slow to our checks and it took us a little bit to get going,” he said.
“We need to be more connected, we were a little bit separated, reading the play a little quicker and getting to your check a second quicker makes a big difference.”
The team battled through a scoreless first period before Atley Calvert opened the scoring for the Warriors with a power play goal midway through the second period.
Calvert buried a great feed from Ryder Korczak for his 20th goal of the season.
The Hitmen continued to press and tied the game early in the third period when Riley Fiddler-Schultz wired home a shot on the power play just five minutes into the final frame.
Both sides had opportunities to take the lead over the final 15 minutes and in overtime, but couldn’t finish off on their scoring chances.
The Warriors killed off two power plays late in the third, including one that stretched into overtime, and Ungar made big saves to keep the game tied, including stopping nine shots in the extra period.
Moose Jaw finished 1-for-7 with the man advantage and went 4-for-5 on the penalty kill.
Mateychuk said despite the loss, the team is focused on learning from each moment.
“We’re just trying to get better every day, come to the rink and work on our systems, work on all of our things technically to get better for the next game and it’s going to keep coming,” he said.