By Craig Stein
MILLIONAIRES MOVE ONE POINT SHY OF PLAYOFF SPOT
The Melville Millionaires are now just a single point out of a playoff spot with four games left, after their 4-3 road victory in Weyburn on Saturday night.
The Millionaires (21-30-3-0) have points in four straight (3-0-1) and had some help out of town as Melfort lost on the road in Flin Flon, putting Melville just one point shy of Melfort for 10th place, and both clubs have four games left.
Colby Entz was huge again, making 35/38 saves in goal for Melville, while Aaron Aragon and Dayton Heino each had a goal and two assists to lead the way up front. Damian Bentz (1g-1a) and Clayton Eisler also scored. Eisler, a defenseman, has goals in three straight games, and 11 on the year.
Mike Eskra had three assists for the Red Wings (25-24-2-4), with Jacob Wozney (1g-1a), Tyran Brown and Carson Rose doing the scoring. Rose opened the scoring, and now has a 10 game point streak (11g-7a-18p).
The Wings remain tied for 6th with Notre Dame, who also lost in regulation on Saturday.
The Flin Flon Bombers helped out Melville, and more important, themselves, with a 4-2 win over Melfort at the Whitney Forum.
The Bombers kept pace with Nipawin, who also won with a late third period goal, so Flin Flon stays two points back in the race for the Sherwood pennant. Greyson Reitmeier had a goal and two assists, giving him an even 70-points on the season. Jason Lavallee (1g-1a), Rylee Zimmer (1g-1a) and Mason Etter also hit the net and Brenden Newton picked up the win with 28/30 saves.
For the Mustangs (20-28-2-4), Matthew Hermary scored late in the second period and Kayle Tosh cut the lead to 3-2 early in the third. Melfort’s now just one point up on Melville for that final playoff spot. They’re back in action Tuesday in La Ronge.
Melfort and Melville each have four games left and they’re all on the same nights, starting Tuesday.
Feb 28 @ LAR
Mar 3 vs NIP
Mar 4 @ NIP
Mar 7 @ HUM
Feb 28 vs ND
Mar 3 @ YOR
Mar 4 vs YOR
Mar 7 vs EST
Grant Baetsen scored with 3:34 to play to help the Nipawin Hawks to a 3-2 win over the Estevan Bruins, and keep them a pair of points up on the Flin Flon Bombers for the Sherwood Division lead.
Eric Bolden added a pair of goals for the Hawks (38-14-2-1) and Tanner Thompson added a late short-handed empty-netter.
The Bruins (34-17-2-1) had a pair of first period leads as Evan Scott opened the scoring and Isaac Embree made it 2-1.
Saturday’s result also means the Bruins can’t catch the Hawks for 2nd place, so if the Hawks win the Sherwood, they will have the #2 seed.
The Humboldt Broncos have swept their Flin Flon-La Ronge road trip and given themselves a great opportunity to bypass the Wild Card series and stay in the top six.
The Broncos edged the La Ronge Ice Wolves 2-1 Saturday, improving their mark to 29-24-1-1, and have a little more breathing room, sitting in fifth place in the overall standings, now four points ahead of Notre Dame and Weyburn.
It was a 1-1 score for a good chunk of the game before Humboldt’s Brett Horn potted the winner with 8:38 left in regulation. Dawson Atamanchuk opened the scoring for Humboldt 3:57 into the game, and Kent Hanson tied things up for La Ronge late in the opening frame.
Shots were 40-36 in favour of the Broncos, as Garrett Mason picked up the win, making 35 saves. Luke Lush made 38/40 stops in goal for the Ice Wolves (6-44-1-4).
For the weekend, Mason stopped 94 of 97 shots, for a .969 save percentage.
The Battlefords North Stars extended their lead at the top of the SJHL standings Saturday, with a 4-1 victory over the visiting Notre Dame Hounds.
The Stars (46-9-1-0) broke open a close game with a pair of third period goals. Connor Logan’s (1g-1a) second period goal stood up as the winner while Connor Sych, Cody Spagrud and Keaton Holinaty did the rest of the scoring and Taryn Kotchorek made 23/24 saves.
Conor MacLean provided the only goal for the Hounds (24-22-6-2), who fall four points back of fifth place Humboldt in that tight middle of the pack. That ends’ the Hounds streak of picking up at least a point in eight consecutive games (6-0-1-1).
Tuesday Schedule (3)
Melfort @ La Ronge 7:00
Notre Dame @ Melville 7:30
Estevan @ Yorkton 7:30