The Winkler Flyers and Neepawa Natives combined for eight goals in the third period as the Flyers got past the Natives 5-4 to win their sixth preseason game in a row. It was the final exhibition home game for the Orange and Black as they close out the exhibition campaign Saturday in Neepawa.
Looking to extend their preseason winning streak to six, the Flyers welcomed the Natives for the first of two straight games against Neepawa.
After a scoreless first period, the Natives took a 1-0 lead with 8:40 to play in the second. Neepawa would take their 1-0 lead into the second intermission despite the Flyers outshooting them 34-18 through 40 minutes.
The Flyers began the wild third period with a goal by Scott Gall just 51 seconds into the period, tying the game 1-1. Evan Last and Nathan Karlowsky drew the assists. Neepawa would take the lead back just moments later.
Before the period was five minutes old, Evan Last was able to sneak one past the Neepawa goaltender pulling Winkler even once again. The Flyers would take their first lead of the game with 12:04 remaining in regulation when Karlowsky and Tanner Posch assisted on Kayden Jarvis’ goal making the score 3-2 for Winkler.
However, Neepawa jumped right back into it with the tying goal just a few minutes later. With just under seven minutes to play, the Flyers would take the lead back for good. Nathan Karlowsky managed to pick the far corner and push the Flyers ahead 4-3 with his third point of the night. Jon Carlson and Zach Heisinger assisted.
The Flyers would get some much needed insurance with just over six minutes left and it came off the stick of Tristan Salesse who extended Winkler’s lead to 5-3 with Reid Burak and Winkler product Nolan McGuire assisting.
That insurance goal would prove to be a big one as the Natives would cut Winkler’s lead to 5-4 with a power-play goal with just two seconds left in the game.
Adam Vander Linden got his second start of the preseason and made 26 saves in the win. Overall, the Flyers outshot the Natives 53-30.
Winkler will now head to Neepawa on Saturday night to conclude their eight game preseason schedule against the Natives. The Flyers have a 6-1 preseason record and have won their last six games in a row.
The Flyers next home game will be their 2014-2015 Regular Season Home Opener on Friday, September 19th when the Steinbach Pistons come to town. Puck drop on Friday night is 7:30pm.
More details on the Flyers home opener will be announced in the coming days. The Flyers opening night roster will also be announced early next week.