The Winkler Flyers lost 5-4 in a shootout in Waywayseecappo on Friday night, in the first of back to back games against the Wolverines. After falling behind 3-0 in the first period, the Flyers rallied to four straight only to see the Wolverines tie the game again with five seconds left in regulation to force extra time.
With points in nine of their last ten games coming in, the Winkler Flyers made the trip to the Waywayseecappo Arena for their fourth meeting of the season against the last place Wolverines. The Flyers had won the previous three meetings, with the last one being decided in overtime at the MJHL Showcase in Winnipeg in December.
The Flyers got off to a rough start, falling behind 2-0 before the first period was half over. The Wolverines increased their lead to 3-0 before the break and Winkler had dug themselves a three goal hole in the first 20 minutes.
They started climbing out of that hole early in the second, with the first of four straight goals in the period. With his last goal coming November 26th against the Wolverines, Gino Lucia snapped home his 11th of the season, 4:02 into the second frame to bring the Flyers to within two goals. Not even a minute and a half later, Tyler Jubenvill scored from the point on the power-play to cut the Wolverines lead to 3-2. Matt Christian and Lawson McDonald assisted on Jubenvill’s eighth of the campaign.
Not even three minutes after that, Gino Lucia and Will Blake assisted on Connor Hamonic’s second of the year to pull the Flyers even. Winkler then took the lead just past the halfway point of the second when Lucia stole the puck right in front of the Wayway net and scored his second of the game to put the Flyers in front 4-3. It was quite a flurry for Winkler in the second period with all four goals coming in a span of six minutes and 25 seconds.
Outshooting the Wolverines 30-12 through 40 minutes, the Flyers looked to put the game to bed in the third. However, the Wolverines hung in there and kept the game close. With the goaltender on the bench in favor of the extra attacker, Wayway tied the game with just five seconds left on the clock and for the second straight meeting, extra time would be required.
After a scoreless overtime, the Flyers were headed to a shootout for the first time this season. And it didn’t take long to decide a winner as both Flyers’ shooters would fail in their attempts and both Wolverines’ shooters were successful and the Wolverines would get the extra point and the 5-4 win.
Cole Weaver made a number of key stops near the end of the game and made 16 saves while seeing his record move to 18-5-2. The Flyers outshot Wayway 40-20. Winkler was 1-for-3 on the power-play and 2-for-2 on the penalty-kill. Winkler has now scored six power-play goals in their last six games.
The Flyers (27-10-2), who have earned at least a point in 10 of their last 11 games will return to Waywayseecappo (6-29-4) on Saturday night (7:30pm). You can catch the game live on Country 88.9FM and online at www.pembinavalleyonline.com with Matt Friesen’s pregame show at 7:25pm.
Great Canadian Oil Change Three Stars
1st Star – F Gino Lucia (Winkler)
2nd Star – F Jacob Bestul (Wayway)
3rd Star – F Derek Wood (Wayway)