The Winkler Flyers gave up two goals in the final seven and a half minutes of regulation in a 4-3 overtime loss to the Dauphin Kings on Friday night. It was the first time all season that the Flyers failed to pick up the win when leading after two periods, but they still managed to earn a point despite not playing up to their potential on the road.
Just four days after dropping an overtime decision to the Kings in Winkler on Sunday night, the Flyers were back on the road looking to improve upon their league best 12-2 record away from home.
After giving up the first goal of the game in their previous two meetings against Dauphin, it was the Flyers turn to score first which they did just under five minutes into the game. Taking the pass from Grady Lane in the neutral zone, Flyers’ leading scorer Sulivan Shortreed chipped it past a Kings’ defender and raced down the right side of the ice before scoring his team leading and league leading 18th goal of the season. It was the 19 year old’s fifth goal as part of a four game goal scoring streak.
Dauphin tied the game later in the period on the power-play and the two teams skated into the intermission tied 1-1. Winkler would score the only goal in the second when Captain Jaden Townsend created a turnover in front of the net and scored his ninth of the season to put his team back in front 2-1.
Entering play with a 15-0 record when leading after two periods, the Flyers added to their lead early in the third. Charging down the right side of the ice, second year defenseman Drake Burgin slid by a Dauphin defender along the wall and threw a pass over to Cameron Critch in front of the net. The first year forward managed to chip the pass over the blocker of netminder Matthias Smith for his first MJHL goal, giving Winkler a 3-1 lead with 14:25 left on the clock.
With just under 10 minutes left in the third, the Flyers went on a 5-on-3 power-play with the hopes of putting the game away. However, it was Dauphin who would turn the tide as they would kill off the 5-on-3 portion and then score a short-handed goal during the ensuing 5-on-4 to make it a one goal game with 7:25 left.
The Kings would complete the comeback with 2:52 left before the buzzer when they scored their second goal of the period to tie the game again 3-3.
And just like they did Sunday night in Winkler, the Kings would come out ahead in overtime. All three games between Winkler and Dauphin this season have been decided in overtime.
Dylan Meilun made 36 saves in the loss as the Kings outshot the Flyers 40-36. Winkler went 0-for-5 on the power-play and 2-for-3 on the penalty-kill.
The Flyers are now 17-6-4 overall which is good for third place in the MJHL Standings, just two points back of the league leading Steinbach Pistons. The Flyers, who are 13-1-4 in their last 18 games will play their next game on the road on Tuesday, December 3rd against the Waywayseecappo Wolverines. Puck drop at the Waywayseecappo Arena is 7:30pm with Matt Friesen’s pregame show on Country 88.9FM and online at www.pembinavalleyonline.com getting underway at 7:25pm. You can also watch the game live with a subscription to www.hockeytv.com
NOTE: Goaltender Dorrin Luding served the first of a two game suspension for a Leaving the Crease penalty he received in last Sunday’s game against Dauphin. Griffin Leonard served the third of a four game suspension and veteran defenseman Garrett Szeremley missed the game due to injury.