The Winkler Flyers came out on the wrong end of a 7-1 score as the visiting Virden Oil Capitals took a 2-1 Quarter Final Series lead with a win in Game Three. Jayden McCarthy scored Winkler’s only goal as the Orange and Black will look to tie the series for a second time with Game Four coming up Thursday in Virden.
After evening up this best of seven series with a 6-3 win in Game Two on Sunday night, the Winkler Flyers returned home to try and pick up a rare home ice victory against the Oil Capitals in Game Three. Including the regular season, the Flyers had not yet figured out how to beat the Oil Caps in four total games played at the Winkler Rec Complex.
After being forced to leave Game Two in Virden with an injury after being chopped down twice in the opening six minutes of the game, goaltender Dorrin Luding was back between the pipes for the Flyers to start Game Three. The visitors drew first blood just over six minutes into the game when a Virden shot caught Luding up high and Drayson Collyer was there to cash in the rebound and Winkler found themselves down 1-0.
Later in the period, after a series of heavy pressure by the Flyers which included a great chance by Eric Fawkes that found the goal post, the Oil Capitals doubled their lead to 2-0. Then with 5:37 left in the first period another Virden goal put the Flyers down by three.
Dylan Meilun would replace Dorrin Luding in goal to start the second after the 20 year old netminder gave it a valiant effort in the opening 20 minutes. Just past the seven minute mark of the middle frame, the Flyers hit the scoreboard when Jayden McCarthy redirected a great Nathan Poolman pass past Ethan Peterson and the Flyers had cut Virden’s lead to 3-1.
The Flyers played their best hockey of the game throughout large portions of the second period, but unfortunately for Winkler the Oil Capitals would put the game away with three goals in the final three minutes of the period and Winkler trailed 6-1 after 40 minutes.
Virden tacked on one more early in the third period and would go on to win the game 7-1, taking a 2-1 lead in the best of seven Quarter-Final series.
Dorrin Luding made 10 saves on 13 shots in the first period and Dylan Meilun made 14 saves on the 18 shots that he faced in the final two periods. Virden outshot Winkler 31-29 overall. Winkler went 0-for-5 on the power-play and 4-for-5 on the penalty-kill.
The Flyers will travel back to Virden for Game Four of the series on Thursday night trying to tie the series for a second time. Winkler is 3-0-1 in Virden this season. 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. You can also watch the game with a subscription to www.hockeytv.com