The Ice Wolves started out 2011 with a divisional clash in Flin Flon with the Bombers. The Pack sat only two points ahead of the Melfort Mustangs for top spot in the Bauer Conference and needed a win to get some more breathing room, and a win they got.
Travis Eggum’s second goal of the game and 34th of the season gave the Ice Wolves a two goal lead that gave the Wolves the cushion they needed to get out of the Whitney Forum with a 4-3 victory.
Skylar Hladun started out the scoring early snapping a shot that just found a way past Flin Flon netminder P.J. Musico. The goal started a torrid first period showing off the scoring touch of both teams in the way of five goals. After Hladun’s opener the Bombers snatched the lead with back-to-back goals. To close the period, the Wolves snagged back to back goals of their own and took a three-two lead into the second frame.
Both coaches seemed to make some adjustments in the intermission, because the second period was locked down by both teams. Neither team scored despite a few good chances on either side. Including Nathan Boyer ringing a shot off the crossbar shorthanded and the Bombers’ Eric Millisor putting a putting a sharp angle shot off the corner post behind Adam Bartko.
The third period opened with the Ice Wolves playing like a team possessed. The Bombers didn’t control the puck in the Wolves’ zone for about the first five minutes of the period, and during that span, Eggum notched his game winner. With the Wolves up two, the Bombers started to play some desperate hockey. David Roper brought the Bombers within one just under halfway through the period and Flin Flon poured it on.
Bartko came up with some big saves late and the Wolves held on to take the game by a 4-3 final score. Big play of the last minute for the Wolves? Taylor Piller going face first in front of a point shot that led to the puck getting trapped along the boards. Luckily, he didn't get the puck in the face, but great dedication from the Wolves' forward.
The big line picked up two points each in this game, it looks as if the holiday break hasn’t taken any edge off Carre, Linensmith or Eggum’s game.
With the win, the Ice Wolves picked up some breathing room on the Mustangs heading into their home and home series with the Humboldt Broncos next week.
If you didn't catch the broadcast, check out the Audio On Demand page for the night's interviews.
1st Star: Travis Eggum - 2 G - Eggum had a couple chances for the trick and scored the game winner. The league's leading scorer struck again.
2nd Star: Dylan Macnab - 1 G, 1 A - Macnab was an important offensive factor and played great in his own end. Most notably along the boards, on multiple occasions he out-competed a couple of Ice Wolves to win a battle.
3rd Star: Adam Bartko - 27 Saves - Bartko was stellar in the second and third period of this game. Could this be a sign of another hot streak from the Wolves netminder?
Like I mentioned above, the Wolves next game is against Humboldt on Tuesday at the Mel. If you're in La Ronge, come on out! If you're not in the area, catch it on the livesports stream.
Have a good night!