The Winnipeg Blues edged the Winkler Flyers 4-3 in a shoot-out on Tuesday night, taking over sole possession of second place in the MJHL. Tristan Keck tied the game with 33 seconds left in regulation to allow the Flyers to earn a single point in their first meeting of the season against their former division rivals.
Winners of their last two games, the Flyers traveled back to the MTS Iceplex in Winnipeg to face the Blues for the first time this season. Winkler defeated OCN and Waywayseecappo over the weekend in Winnipeg during the MJHL Showcase event. The Flyers and Blues were tied for second place in the league entering play.
Lawson McDonald scored an unassisted goal with 5:25 left in the opening period to give the Flyers a 1-0 lead. Winnipeg, who sports the best power-play in the league, tied the game on the man advantage with 2:19 to play before the break.
The Flyers would take the lead back before the end of the period when Shawn Pachet passed the puck from behind the net to Tristan Keck, who buried his league leading 11th goal of the season. Evan Last also assisted on the goal.
Leading 2-1 in the second period, the Flyers gave Winnipeg another power-play and it cost them again. The Blues would tie the game, 7:03 into the period with their second goal on the man advantage.
The game went into the second intermission tied 2-2 with the Blues out-shooting the Flyers 24-14.
Winnipeg would take a 3-2 lead near the midway point of the third, thanks to their third power-play goal of the game. The Flyers, who had out-scored their opponents 10-2 in the third period this season were now in search of the tying goal in order to force extra time.
With 45 seconds left in regulation, the Flyers pulled their goaltender in favor of the extra attacker. With a faceoff in the offensive zone, Patrice Wren pushed the puck between the legs of the Blues centreman and over to Cam Whyte who swung a pass towards the front of the net. Tristan Keck was there at the far post to tap in his second of the game and league best 12th of the season to draw the Flyers even with just 33 seconds left on the clock.
Despite both teams having power-plays in the overtime period, the game would remain 3-3 through 65 minutes of play. Winnipeg had lost their last two games both in shootouts.
Both Kamerin Nault of the Blues and Tristan Keck of the Flyers would fail to score on their first attempts in the shoot-out. Gianlucca Esteves scored for Winnipeg, but Shawn Pachet would get that right back for the Flyers. Brett Brooks also scored for the Blues with their next shot and with Evan Last failing to score for the Flyers, Winnipeg would get the extra point and win the game 4-3.
Dasan Sydora made 29 saves in the shoot-out loss as the Blues outshot the Flyers 32-24 through 65 minutes of play. Special Teams proved to be a factor in the game as Winkler went 0-for-5 on the power-play while Winnipeg went 3-for-6.
The Flyers (6-2-1) will host the OCN Blizzard (4-5-1) for two back-to-back home games this weekend. Puck drop on Friday and Saturday night is 7:30pm. The Flyers beat the Blizzard 4-2, this past Friday at the MJHL Showcase.