Coltyn Bates scored three times as the Winkler Flyers soared past the Dauphin Kings 7-2 in the middle game of their three game weekend road swing. It was a dominating performance by the Flyers, who picked up their 19th win of the season while firing 61 shots on the Dauphin net.
Looking to keep rolling, after a 5-2 win in Neepawa the night before, the Flyers made the trip north for their third meeting of the season against the Kings. After winning their previous two meetings, the Orange and Black turned to rookie goaltender Aaron Brunn who was in search of his fifth win in seven starts.
The Flyers were good right from the start and took a 1-0 lead just over seven minutes into the game. Scoring just one goal in his previous six games, forward Coltyn Bates cleaned up a rebound in front for his 12th of the season. Despite outshooting the Kings 14-7 in the first, Winkler failed to add to their lead. It was also the first time since October 27th that the Flyers managed to take a lead into the first intermission.
The second period was dominated by the Flyers, and they would add to their lead in the opening minute. After creating a turnover in the neutral zone, leading scorer Matt Christian toe dragged around the Dauphin defense and wired in his first of the game, doubling Winkler’s lead to 2-0.
Dauphin netminder Brennan Kitchen kept his team in the game with a great performance in the second period as the Flyers fired a total of 30 shots on net in the middle frame alone. The Kings scored their first of the game with 14 seconds left in the second while on a 5-on-3 power-play to cut Winkler’s lead to 2-1 after two periods.
Winkler really opened things up in the third and would find the back of the net five more times. Just over six minutes into the period, Coltyn Bates scored his second of the game to restore the Flyers two goal lead. Just moments later, Matt Christian picked the top corner again for his second of the game and Winkler’s lead now stood at 4-1.With 9:26 left in regulation, Collin Caulfield took a pass at the point from Nolan McGuire and scored his first goal as a Flyer to push Winkler ahead by four. Mitch Dyck earned his second assist of the night on that power-play goal.
Later in the period, after the Kings scored to cut Winkler’s lead to 5-2, Nolan McGuire snapped home his MJHL leading 20th goal of the season to make the score 6-2 for the visitors with 6:02 left on the clock. Roughly two minutes after that, the Flyers would score their second power-play goal of the game and once again it came off the stick of Coltyn Bates, who scored for the third time in the game.
Aaron Brunn was good when called upon for Winkler, improving his record to 5-1. The Flyers outshot Dauphin 61-26. The Flyers were 2-for-5 on the power-play and 2-for-3 on the penalty-kill.
The Flyers (19-8-0) are now just one point shy of first place in the MJHL standings and will conclude their weekend road swing Sunday night in Swan Valley (9-10-3). Game time at the Swan River Centennial Arena is 7pm with Matt Friesen’s pregame show live on Country 88.9FM and online at www.pembinavalleyonline.com getting underway at 6:55pm.
GREAT CANADIAN OIL CHANGE THREE STARS
1ST STAR – F COLTYN BATES (WINKLER)
2ND STAR – F MATT CHRISTIAN (WINKLER)
3RD STAR – F NOLAN McGUIRE (WINKLER)