The Winkler Flyers picked up their third win in a row on Saturday afternoon, blanking the Neepawa Natives 6-0 in their second game at the MJHL Showcase in Winnipeg. Less than 24 hours after starting their showcase weekend with a 3-0 win over Dauphin, goaltender Ryan Larochelle and the Flyers’ defense picked up right where they left off in their first game of the season against the Kings.
Riding a two game winning streak, the Winkler Flyers were looking for another win to keep their share of top spot in the league standings. Against the Natives, the Flyers got off to a quick start.
Just past the five minute mark of the first period, Tristan Keck and Cam Whyte assisted on Thomas Mansbridge’s first as a Flyer giving Winkler an early 1-0 lead. Exactly one minute and four seconds later Jeff Michiels was the beneficiary of some nice work by rookie forward Coltyn Bates and he gave Winkler a 2-0 lead. Connor Hamonic also assisted on Michiels first of the game and third of the season.
The Flyers dominated the first period and skated into the second up 2-0 while outshooting Neepawa 13-6 through 20 minutes. Winkler kept up the pace in the second period and added three more goals.
The first of those goals came 3:21 into the period on the power-play when Tristan Keck and Kayden Jarvis assisted on Zak Hicks’ fourth of the season. Three minutes and 19 seconds after that, Winkler added another power-play goal to run their lead to 4-0. This time it was Jordan Williamson picking up his second of the year from Scott Gall and Lawson McDonald.
With 2:23 left in the period Tristan Keck took the puck down the left wing side, and as he has done many times before, he found Cam Whyte in the right slot who ripped in the Flyers fifth goal of the game. Kayden Jarvis picked up his second assist on Whyte’s second goal of the season. Winkler took their 5-0 lead into the second intermission while leading on the shot clock 29-14.
Flyers goaltender Ryan Larochelle and rest of the Flyers defense would remain perfect for the rest of the game and Jeff Michiels would score his second of the game with one minute left in the third to make the final score 6-0 for Winkler.
Ryan Larochelle (3-1-0) made 19 saves in his second straight shutout and third win overall this season. Winkler outshot Neepawa 41-19 in the game. Winkler went 2-for-9 on the power-play and 4-for-4 on the penalty-kill. The Flyers have now scored at least one power-play goal in all five regular season games.
Winkler’s next game will be Tuesday, October 6th when the Steinbach Pistons come to town. Puck drop at the Winkler Recreation Complex is 7:30pm. The Flyers, Pistons, and Portage Terriers are all tied for first place in the league standings with identical 4-1-0 records.
Great Canadian Oil Change Three Stars
1st – Tristan Keck – Winkler (3 assists)
2nd – Jeff Michiels – Winkler (2 goals)
3rd – Ryan Larochelle – Winkler (19 save shutout)