By Craig Stein
THREE GAMES HEAD TO SHOOTOUTS
The Battlefords North Stars opened a weekend set in Flin Flon, defeating the Bombers 4-3 in a shootout Friday night.
The Bombers have now lost a pair of games in extra time on home ice, but still have yet to lose in regulation at the Whitney Forum.
Taryn Kotchorek made 39/42 saves to pick up the win for the Stars, before going a perfect 4/4 in the shootout. Levi Kleiboer, Owen Lamb and Connor Manegre scored, Bryce Hall and Keaton Holinaty had two assists each, and captain Kendall Fransoo had the only goal of the shootout, in the fourth round.
Zac Robidoux made 43/46 saves for the Bombers (6-1-1-1), with Brandon Lesko, Jason Lavallee and Ben Lanfermann doing the scoring.
The North Stars have quietly won three straight and gone 7-3-0-0 in their first 10 games, keeping within striking distance of league-leading Humboldt in the Finning Division early on.
Flin Flon hosts the Stars again on Saturday.
The Melville Millionaires broke a three game losing streak, winning the first Highway 10 battle of the season, 3-2 over the Yorkton Terriers.
Mathieu Jallabert scored twice for Melville (4-6-0-0), including the winner on the powerplay with less than five minutes to play. Dryden Wust tied the game in the third with his first SJHL goal. Brandon Wells made 33/36 saves, and holds a .934 save percentage on the season, despite having a record a game below .500.
Greg Maggio made 25/28 saves for the Terriers (2-4-2-0), who held a pair of leads, on goals from Matthew Perkins and Brandon Sookro.
Estevan’s Kaelan Holt became the SJHL’s first 10-goal scorer, and he did it in his 9th game of the season as the Bruins got by the La Ronge Ice Wolves 5-3.
Holt has goals in all but two of the Bruins’ games so far, and has three multi-goal games.
Joining him on the score sheet Friday was Jake Fletcher, Isaac Embree, Jason Miller and Jayden Davis. Kurtis Chapman picked up his first victory, making 31/34 saves for the Bruins (6-2-0-1).
Estevan’s five goals all came in the first 27:25 of the game. Luke Lush came off the bench and stopped all 18 shots he faced for La Ronge (1-10-0-0). The Ice Wolves had goals from Bryce Fiske, Nick Prouty and Trevor Bush.
La Ronge wraps up a four game trip Saturday night in Weyburn.
Cole Woodliffe scored the only goal of a 12-round shootout, as the Weyburn Red Wings edged the Notre Dame Hounds 4-3 (SO).
Nathan Hargrave made 35/38 saves in regulation and overtime, and stopped 12 consecutive breakaways in the shootout.
Carson Rose (1g-1a), Braden Mellon (1g-1a) and Tyran Brown scored for the Red Wings (6-3-0-1) as they kept pace with Estevan at the top of the Viterra Division.
Jordan Greenfield-Flemon made 32/35 saves in goal for the Hounds (5-4-0-1) and stopped 11/12 in the shootout. Tyler Podgorenko (1g-1a) forced overtime, scoring with just four seconds left in the third period, on the powerplay. Riley Mohr and Ben Duperreault scored first period goals, and had the Hounds out front 2-0 at the time.
The Kindersley Klippers and Humboldt Broncos also needed extra time, as the Klippers won their third straight game, getting past the Broncos 4-3 in a shootout.
Gunnar Nielsen made 33/36 saves, and 3/3 in the shootout. Branden Wagner (1g-1a), Andrew McCaan and Josh Bly did the scoring for the Klippers (4-3-0-0).
The Broncos (8-1-0-1) had a four game winning streak get snapped but do have points in five straight, and in 9 of 10 games this season.
Erik Gardiner, a 17-year-old hometown Humboldt product, re-assigned from the Regina Pats this week, scored twice in his first SJHL game. Tyler Posch potted his seventh of the season on a late third period powerplay to force overtime, and goaltender Garrett Mason made 33/36 saves.