The Winkler Flyers handed the Portage Terriers their first loss of the season, earning a 3-2 win at the PCU Centre. Racing out to a 3-0 lead through 25 minutes of play, Dasan Sydora and the Winkler defense held off the first place Terriers the rest of the way while earning their 10th win of the season.
Coming into the game on the heels of a successful northern trip, the Flyers made their way to the PCU Centre looking for a better result than the last time they were there. In their first meeting of the season, the Flyers fell 8-1 in Portage back on September 30th. That in fact was the Flyers last regulation loss.
With both teams trading chances in the first period, it was the Flyers who hit the scoreboard first. After taking the pass from Connor Hamonic, Cam Whyte found Tristan Keck near the Terrier blueline. Racing into the zone, the Morris native made a beautiful move towards the front of the net before depositing his league best 15th goal of the season into the goal with 5:39 left in the period.
Just under two minutes later, Patrice Wren scored a one time goal on the power-play and the Flyers led by two. Scott Gall and Shawn Pachet assisted on Wren’s third goal of the season. The Flyers would take their 2-0 lead into the first intermission, despite being outshot 11-9.
The Portage Terriers, who were riding a season opening 14 game winning streak started to push back in the middle period. Despite spending the bulk of the second in their own zone, the Flyers managed to increase their lead 3-0, 5:08 into the period. Scott Gall scored his third of the year with linemates Patrice Wren and Cam Whyte assisting. All three players increased their point streaks to four straight.
With 3:11 left in the period, Taylor Friesen scored for the Terriers to cut Winkler’s lead to 3-1. The Flyers bent but did not break in the second period, taking their 3-1 lead into the intermission, despite being outshot 10-2 in the second and 21-11 overall through 40 minutes.
Portage caught a break early in the third period and scored their second goal just under five minutes into the period. After Dasan Sydora got knocked down beside the net, Garick Gray scored to cut Winkler’s lead to 3-2. Despite some lobbying from the Flyers, the goal would count to put the Terriers were right back into the hockey game.
For the final 15 minutes, Dasan Sydora and the Flyers defense would protect their one goal lead and earn their biggest win of the season so far.
Sydora (6-1-1) made 24 saves in the win as the Flyers were outshot 26-17. Winkler went 1-for-4 on the power-play and 3-for-3 on the penalty-kill. The Flyers are now 1-1-1 against Portage this season.
The Flyers (10-2-4) will return home to host the Dauphin Kings (7-6-2) on Saturday night. The Flyers are 2-0 against Dauphin this season. Puck drop at the Winkler Recreation Complex is 7:30pm.