Hannoun’s homecoming results in win for Raiders

By Jeff D'Andrea
January 22, 2019 - 11:57pm

When the Prince Albert Raiders rolled into Victoria to take on the Royals, it was a huge night for a large number of players who were playing against their former teams, with the likes of Noah Gregor, Brayden Pachal and Jeremy Masella battling the their former Royals teammates, as well as Kody McDonald, Carson Miller and D-Jay Jerome playing against their old Raider club.

But it was the biggest night for Raider Dante Hannoun, who had an assist on the game-winning goal as the Raiders defeated the Royals 4-1.

Before the trade deadline this year, the Royals were all that Hannoun knew in the WHL career. He was a first round draft choice, 11th overall in the 2013 WHL Bantam Draft by Victoria, and played 286 games with the Royals from 2014 until this year.

The Royals gave him a touching video tribute at the first period media timeout, to which Hannoun saluted the crowd.

“I got nothing but great things to say. They treated me so well, they took me in at a young age and everything since I was 16 was unbelievable,” Hannoun said of his time in Victoria. “I was very grateful for the opportunity to be there. I’m just excited for this new opportunity in Prince Albert.”

Despite getting traded midway through his last season, Hannoun will still go down as one of the best offensive producers the Royals have ever had. He ranks second all-time in Royals assists with 150, tied for third in points with 248, fifth in goals with 98 and fourth in games played with 286.

With the win, the Raiders now have 40 wins on the season. That’s the first time they’ve hit that milestone since the 1998-99 season. They also hit it without their head coach Marc Habscheid and forward Brett Leason, who are both in Red Deer in preparation for the Sherwin-Williams CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game on Wednesday.

“We talked about a lot of motivating factors, and we did bring it up,” Raiders assistant coach Jeff Truitt said, who served as the Raiders' head coach on Tuesday. “It would sure be nice to get to 40, but then you move on and readjust your goals that way. You don’t want to settle on it, you keep going.”

They also have a 3-0-0-1 record against the B.C. division, which is their best since the league went alternating B.C. and U.S. road trips. To put it in perspective, the last time Raiders travelled out to B.C. in the 2016-17 season, as they went 0-5.

The Raiders will face the Vancouver Giants, the top-ranked team in the division with a 29-12-2-0 record, on Thursday.

Scoring Summary

First Period

1-0, Raiders, Justin Nachbaur from Ozzy Wiesblatt and Cole Fonstad (power play) 15:02

2-0, Raiders, Sean Montgomery from Dante Hannoun and Brayden Pachal, 15:49

Second Period

2-1, Royals, D-Jay Jerome from Kaid Oliver, 1:00

3-1, Raiders, Cole Fonstad (unassisted), 4:27

Third Period

4-1, Raiders, Max Martin from Aliaksei Protas, 8:52

 

Jeff.dandrea@jpbg.ca

On Twitter: @jeff_paNOW

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