The North Stars grabbed a 4-3 win last night in Kindersley for their first regulation time win over the Klippers this season.
But it took a late Brady O’Sullivan goal to get the job done as the Stars blew a 3-0 lead in the third period.
First the positives. The Stars opening period was maybe their best 20 minutes of hockey this season. It was dominant. Shift after shift in the attacking zone. Chance after chance. And the potted three. Matt Havens opened the scoring with his first as a North Star. Michael Statchuk set it up with a beauty pass from the left point. Rather than just blasting away from the point he instead fired it right down to the side of the net to Havens. The young North Stars forward walked out front and around Weninger before sliding the puck home.
That line scored again later in the period. Jake McMillen working straight ahead off a face-off before skating out front and going around Weninger to the forehand and sliding the puck home.
That’s back to back games with multiple goals from that Havens, McMillen and Heinrich line.They are giving the North Stars a nice one-two punch offensively. The third goal of the period was scored by Jordan Townsend. So actually the Stars have more of a one-two-three punch. Nick Fountain was knocked down at the side of the net, got up, worked to get to and then win the puck on the wing boards. He spun and fired to Townsend who was alone in front. Townsend able to go to a fake backhand before sliding home on the forehand to make it 3-0.
The Stars ended up with a 20-3 shot advantage in the first and spent probably 15 or more minutes in the offensive zone. Evan Weninger was lifted for the start of the second period as the Klippers looked to spark their team.
In the second period the Stars got in a little trouble with the refs but ended up killing off 4 straight Klipper power plays. Ryan Rewerts a big part of that as he made 17 saves in the middle frame. And really, when you kill that many penalties in one period you have to say that although maybe the discipline could have been better. That’s still a good period of hockey.
The Klippers did look to have scored one though. Michael Statchuk making a save with his leg from in behind Rewerts after a scramble. Statchuk then gloved the puck away and batted it out of trouble. There is some debate about whether that puck actually crossed the line. But the ref said no goal and play continued.
After 40 minutes of a lot of positives the third period had plenty of negatives. The Stars got into a lot of trouble in their own zone. They turned the puck over multiple times usually right at their own blueline and for some reason they kept giving it to Owen LaClare. Ryan Rewerts stopped the Edam native a couple times. But LaClare scored twice including the game tying goal. Connor Garden scored in between those two LaClare goals and with a couple minutes left in regulation it was 3-3 and the Klippers had all the momentum.
But Brady O’Sullivan drew a late power play as he drove the net but was taken out well after he had shot towards Nathan Hargrave. Ty Lindberg heading off for interference. The Stars took advantage with a power play game winner with 12.9 seconds remaining. And it was O’Sullivan again. He fired from the top of the right face-off circle and went post and in to win. Hargrave didn’t have to do much in the game after replacing Weninger but couldn’t do anything with a perfect shot from O’Sullivan.
There were plenty of big hits in the game. Baxter Kanter on Carter Sawicki in the first. Also in the first period Jackson Bond dumped Kolby Johnson. Johnson took a run at Kendall Fransoo in the second period. Fransoo saw him coming and stood up to the hit. It was Johnson who bounced off Fransoo and went spinning to the ice.
The North Stars won a wild one in Kindersley and it was a game that they can learn a lot of lessons from as well.
San-Berg Collision of the Game: Fransoo standing up Johnson
Canadian Tire 3 Stars: 3) Ryan Rewerts 2) Owen LaClare 1) Nick Fountain
The Stars now have over a week off to get ready to face the Klippers a week from tomorrow (Thursday, Oct 39th) and to learn from their chance to kill off last night’s game.