After falling to the Owen Sound Attack 5-0 on Saturday, the Kootenay Ice had two reasons to coming storming out of the gate on Thursday evening: revenge and the opportunity to advance to the Memorial Cup semi-finals.
The Ice handed the Attack a 7-3 loss and booted them from the tournament, pushing them into the semi-final tonight against the Mississauga Majors.
Flames prospects Max Reinhart and Joey Leach both contributed on the scoresheet. Reinhart had a goal and an assist, elevating his points total to six in the past two games. The sudden burst of offense places him second in tournament scoring, just one point behind leader Andrew Shaw of Owen Sound.
Defenceman Leach posted his second assist of the tournament. The Wadena, Saskatchewan native is tied for second in scoring among defenceman with two points.
Kootenay is aiming to become just the second team to rally back from a 0-2 start and win the Memorial Cup. Only the Windsor Spitfires have accomplished the feat but Ice head coach Kris Knoblauch doesn't think people should compare the two clubs.
"We're our own team with our own identity," he told the Cranbrook Daily Townsman. "The Spitfires had a much different team than we do, but I think there's a lot of belief in that room.
"We've been the underdogs right from our first round of playoffs. They picked us not to win our first round, and same in the second as we moved on. We like others counting us out. I think we gain some inspiration from that."
The Memorial Cup semi-final airs at 5:00 PM MST on Sportsnet West.