The Winkler Flyers increased their winning streak to four games with a 3-1 win over the Swan Valley Stampeders at the MJHL Showcase in Winnipeg. Playing in front of a large number of NCAA, NHL, WHL and Canadian College scouts at the MTS Iceplex, the Flyers played a near perfect game against the Stamps, picking up their 23rd win of the year.
With all 11 teams in the Manitoba Junior Hockey League gathering in Winnipeg for the league’s annual player showcase, the Flyers took on the Swan Valley Stampeders in the first of their two games at the event. This was the third meeting of the year between the two clubs, with the Flyers winning the previous two games.
With nine days off since they last hit the ice, the Flyers had a very strong first period. Just past the halfway point of the opening period, Gino Lucia found Nolan McGuire in front of the net and the Winkler native scored his 14th of the season to give Winkler a 1-0 lead. Nathan Peabody also picked up his first point as a Flyer with an assist on the goal. Winkler took their one goal lead into the first intermission, while outshooting the Stampeders 17-7.
Winkler continued to carry the play in the second frame and increased their lead with two more goals. With 7:39 left in the period, Braden Billany blocked a shot at the Winkler blueline and raced into the Stampeders zone on a breakaway. The second year Flyer skated right at goaltender Brett Evans and snapped a shot over his shoulder to double Winkler’s lead to 2-0. It was Billaney’s ninth goal of the year and 11th point in a span of eight games.
Just over a minute and a half later, Coltyn Bates and Matt Christian assisted on Ian Mackey’s sixth of the season and the Flyers’ lead had grown to 3-0. Winkler allowed the Stampeders just three shots on goal in the second and carried their three goal lead into the third period, while outshooting the Stamps 30-10.
The Stampeders only goal came on a 5-on-3 power-play with eight minutes left in the game and Winkler’s lead was cut to 3-1.
Troy Martyniuk earned his second victory in his second start between the pipes for Winkler with a 15 save performance. The Flyers outshot the Stampeders 38-16. Winkler was 0-for-5 on the power-play and 3-for-4 on the penalty-kill.
The Flyers (23-9-0) will play the Waywayseecappo Wolverines (4-25-3) on Wednesday night in their second game at the MJHL Showcase. Puck drop at the MTS IcePlex is 6pm with the pregame show live on Country 88.9FM and online at www.pembinavalleyonline.com getting underway at 5:55pm.
GREAT CANADIAN OIL CHANGE THREE STARS
1ST STAR – F IAN MACKEY (WINKLER)
2ND STAR – D LAWSON McDONALD (WINKLER)
3RD STAR – G BRETT EVANS (SWAN VALLEY)