The Winkler Flyers eight game winning streak came to an end on Saturday night, with a 4-3 shootout loss to the visiting Waywayseecappo Wolverines. The Flyers fired 41 shots at Wayway goaltender Greg Harney but failed to hit their stride offensively, seeing their record fall to 20-4-2.
Looking to stretch their winning streak to nine games, the Flyers returned home after picking up another two points the night before in Neepawa. This was the third meeting of the season between the Flyers and Wolverines, with Winkler winning the two previous games in Winkler.
Winkler got off to a great start when Jeff Michiels and Tyler Jubenvill assisted on Jordan Williamson’s ninth of the year just 1:26 into the game. The Flyers kept the pressure on in the first period but failed to build on their lead. With 4:05 left in the period, Wayway forward Johl Swedlo scored to tie the game at one. The Flyers outshot the Wolverines 16-9 in the period, but were forced to head into the second without the lead.
The Flyers’ generated some great chances in the second period but again, failed to find the back of the net. The Wolverines took the lead, 4:23 into the period on one of their three shots in the period. Now outshooting their opponent 28-12, the Flyers skated into the third period trailing for the second straight game.
Wayway caught a break early in the third period when Rhett Lough capitalized on a defensive miscue by the Flyers to push the Wolverines up by a score of 3-1, just 1:25 into the third. Winkler was quick to get that one back, cutting the Wolverines lead to 3-2 just under a minute later. After sending the puck down the right wing wall, rookie defenseman Mitch Dyck pinched in from the point and scored on a one time shot, for his first ever Manitoba Junior Hockey League goal. Kurt Sonne and Cam Whyte drew the assists.
Getting the spark they needed from the Dyck goal, the Flyers went hunting for the equalizer. And they got it with just 4:25 to play in regulation. After taking the pass in the right wing corner from Lawson McDonald, Tristan Keck fired in on goal where Cam Whyte was waiting to jam home his 17th of the year, tying the game 3-3 and sending the contest to overtime.
The Flyers had their chances to finish off the Wolverines in overtime but the Wayway goaltender continued to frustrate the Flyers’ shooters as he had done all game long.
Greg Harney went on to stop all three Flyers’ shooters in the shootout and Johl Swedlo scored the only goal of the competition to give the road team the extra point and the 4-3 victory.
Ryan Larochelle took the loss in his first start since the 16th of October. He made 19 saves on the 22 shots he faced seeing his record fall to 5-2-2. The Flyers outshot Waywayseecappo 41-22 overall. Winkler’s power-play was 0-for-7 with the penalty-kill a perfect 6-for-6.
The Flyers (20-4-2) finished the month of November with an 8-1-1 record. They will now embark on a crucial month of December which will kick off on Tuesday, December 1st with their final meeting of the regular season against the Steinbach Pistons. Puck drop at the Winkler Recreation Complex is 7:30pm.
Great Canadian Oil Change Three Stars
1st Star – G Greg Harney (Waywayseecappo)
2nd Star – F Cam Whyte (Winkler)
3rd Star – F Rhett Lough (Waywayseecappo)