Hawks Win Game 2, Tie Series at 1
The Nipawin Hawks pulled out a gutsy win on Saturday night, 4-3, to tie their best of 5 Wildcard playoff series with the Notre Dame Hounds at 1.
It was a much better start for the Hawks, as opposed to game 1, but Notre Dame would get the first goal again in game 2.
Kevin Madden forced a turnover, and centered a pass for Jon Paris, who snuck a backhander past Joe O’Brien.
Tayler Balog evened things up 1:45 later, when Carter Danzcak found him all alone in front, after Garret Lockeridge forced a turnover behind the net on the fore-check.
Nipawin would get their first lead of the series with under 1:30 to play, when Mitch Doell scored on the powerplay, on a point shot through traffic.
The Hounds would fight back, and score with 1 second to go before intermission, as Cory Anderson took a sharp angle shot, than jammed the rebound passed O’Brien, right through the five hole.
There was no scoring in the second period, but some great goaltending was on display from both sides.
In the third, Kris Spriggs took a stretch pass from Eric Bollefer, and stepped around a Hound defenceman, who tried to hit Spriggs, but the rookie stepped around him, than went in and scored over the glove of Thibaudeau.
Spriggs’ 2nd of the postseason made it 3-2 Hawks with over 15 minutes to play.
Nipawin expanded their lead, when Michael Lambert got in on the forecheck, and forced a turnover, which led to Tad Kozun sniping a backhand shot on the glove hand of the Hound netminder, with under 4 to go.
The Hounds would continue to fight, and pulled their goalie with just over 2 minutes remaining, and it paid off.
A pointshot went off of Sam Aulie in front of the net, which cut the deficit to 1 with 1:40 to play.
The Hawks didn’t allow too much more in their defensive zone after that goal, and kept chipping pucks into the safe zone, outside their blue line.
They would hold on to win 4-3, and tie the series up, as it shifts to Notre Dame for games 3 and 4 on Monday and Tuesday.
Joe O’Brien made 39 stops in the Hawk net, some of which came in point blank range in the high slot, that he was able to turn aside.
Alexi Thibaudeau was solid again, and like O’Brien, had to make some timely big saves as well.
He finished with 32 saves.
The Hawks went 1/4 with the man advantage, while the Hounds went 0/4.
You can catch games 3 and 4 on CK750, starting with the pre-game show at 7:15.
YourTownNews Weekly Poll Question
The provincial government has released their Third Quarter Financial Report.
They have transferred 135 million dollars from their ‘rainy day fund’ to balance the books, in part because of lower oil and gas revenues.
Here is this week’s poll question: