The Winkler Flyers picked up two big points on Saturday night, with a come from behind, 3-2 shootout win in Steinbach. Jordan Williamson scored the game winner and Connor Slipp stopped all three Pistons’ shooters to help the Flyers get back into the win column.
Four days removed from a disappointing loss in Selkirk, the Flyers made their final regular season trip to the TG Smith Centre in Steinbach. This was already the fifth meeting of the season against their rivals from the east in just 18 regular season games. Winkler was 1-2-1 against the Pistons in the previous four games. Steinbach was also coming off a loss to the Steelers the night before.
With a number of regulars out of the line-up due to injury or illness, the Flyers struggled to hit their stride in the first period. Steinbach defenseman Joe Carney scored the game’s first goal just over six minutes into the game, when his point shot beat goaltender Connor Slipp through a screen.
Steinbach doubled their lead, 9:09 into the second with another screened shot from the outside. This time it was forward Cole Smith beating Slipp to make the score 2-0 for the home side.
The Flyers, who were playing better and better as the game rolled along, started their comeback effort in the second half of the period. With 6:19 remaining, and with Winkler on a 5-on-3 power-play, Tristan Keck got a piece of Lawson McDonald’s point shot, deflecting it past goaltender Jeremy Wik for the Flyers first goal of the game. Tyler Jubenvill also assisted on Keck’s eighth of the season.
Still trailing 2-1 entering the third, Winkler pushed the pace in the final period of regulation looking for the equalizer. After taking the pass from Kurt Sonne in the right wing corner, Cam Whyte found Keck in front of the net, and the Flyers leading point getter put home his second of the game, pulling the Flyers even 2-2 with 8:26 to play in the third.
Tristan Keck had two great chances to get the game winner late in the third and again in overtime, but the two teams remained tied through 65 minutes of play. Tonight’s game was the second time the Flyers had been to a shootout this season. They were victorious in their first try.
After Flyers’ forward Jordan Williamson scored for Winkler on the second shot of the second round, Connor Slipp stopped Pistons’ forward Hayden Goderis to secure the 3-2 victory for the Flyers.
Slipp made 33 stops through 65 minutes of play and went 3-for-3 in the shootout, improving his overall record to 5-0. The Pistons outshot Winkler 35-32 overall. Both teams went 1-for-5 on the power-play.
The Flyers (13-4-1) will return home to host the Selkirk Steelers (8-7) on Sunday, November 8th in the first of four straight games at the Winkler Rec Complex. The Flyers fell 5-3 in Selkirk this past Tuesday in their first meeting of the season. Puck drop at the Winkler Recreation Complex is 7:30pm. Advance tickets can be purchased at the Winkler Coop Gas Bar.
Great Canadian Oil Change Three Stars
1st Star – F Tristan Keck (Winkler)
2nd Star – G Connor Slipp (Winkler)
3rd Star – F Cole Smith (Steinbach)
Winkler Canvas Hardest Worker
D Connor Hamonic (Winkler).