By Craig Stein
(Photo Credit: Clark Stork, NorthEast NOW)
The race atop the Sherwood Division got a little tighter Friday night as the Nipawin Hawks came from behind to defeat the Melfort Mustangs 4-3 in overtime.
The Mustangs (18-5-4-1) led 3-1 thanks to a pair of Tristen Elder first period goals, and a Kalem Zary marker in the second.
Brandan Arnold opened the scoring and also finished things off with the overtime winner, his 19th of the season. Arnold finished with two goals and an assist, as did defenseman Josh McDougall, who engineered the comeback, scoring twice in the third period.
Jake Anthony made 29/32 saves in the win. Evan Plotnik stopped 43/47 at the other end.
The Hawks (18-5-1-2) are now just two points back of the Mustangs for the Division lead with two games in hand.
Nipawin’s in Flin Flon Saturday while Melfort’s home again versus Weyburn.
The Estevan Bruins ended the Battlefords North Stars’ most recent extended winning streak at seven games, with a 3-2 decision in a battle of divisional leaders.
Hayden Guilderson and Jake Fletcher scored third period goals for the Bruins (17-10-2-1), who trailed 2-1 heading into the final period. Jerzy Martin opened the scoring and Matt Lukacs made 21/23 saves. Estevan increased their Viterra Division lead to three points over Weyburn with the win.
Chasteon Braid and Layne Young did the scoring for the North Stars (19-4-1-0), who remain with a one point lead in the Olympic Buildings Division.
The La Ronge Ice Wolves got back in the win column with a 4-3 decision over the Weyburn Red Wings.
Tanner Brewster and Austin Bill got La Ronge on the board in the first period and the teams were tied 2-2 after twenty. Shane Hounsell put them in the lead with a second period marker, and Nolan Dawson (1g-1a) provided some third period insurance. Merek Pipes picked up the win in goal for the Ice Wolves (6-19-0-2).
Dexter Robinson scored his first goal with the Red Wings (16-10-2-0), while William Cruise and Tyran Brown scored during the first period.