In a rescheduled match – up, the fifth place Fort Frances Lakers headed to Dryden, Ontario to meet the second place Dryden Ice Dogs on January 8th in a Superior International Junior Hockey League match – up.
Trey Palermo and Brendan Jay set up Jacen Bracko for his 24th of the season to give the Ice Dogs a 1 – 0 lead 5:44 into the opening period. Evan Walls sinks the second goal at 7:40 of the period on his 11th of the season with a pass from affilaite Kris Hamlin to give Dryden a 2 – 0 lead. Connor Mowatt and Woody Galbraith drew the assists on Eric Stout’s 18th of the season to bring the hosts lead to 3 – 0 at the 12:58 mark of the first. Bracko adds to the lead 6:54 into the middle stanza with his second of the contest with Dakotah Woods and Palermo notching the helpers on Dryden’s fourth of the game. Walls finds the back of Fort Frances net 25 seconds past the halfway mark of the period with Hamlin and Jay adding the contributors on Walls’ goal.
Matt Pitchenese and Hamlin draw the helpers on Stout’s second of the contest at 19:59 of the period to send the Ice Dogs into the second intermission up 6 – 0. Trevor Kavanaugh fires his seventh of the season to increase the lead to 7 – 0 at 2:04 of the final period. Cory Dennis and Mowatt had the assists on Dryden’s seventh of the game. With his 20th of the season, Dryden’s Eric Stout registers his first hat trick of the 2017 – 2018 season 6:17 into the third. Galbraith and Mowatt added the contributors on Stout’s third of the game to give the Ice Dogs a 8 – 0 shutout win over the Lakers. Fort Frances goaltenders Ismael Ralsten and Brett Akins shared the duties between the pipes for the Lakers with Akins turning away 12 of 15 in the first 12:58 while Ralsten stopped 31 of 36 in the final 47:02. Dryden’s netminder Landon Pavlisin earned his first shutout with the Ice Dogs in the win on Monday evening.
Laker coach Wayne Strachan told the Junior Hockey Network that “we were out worked, out played they came with a mission and we need to be better. When we played with some emotion good things happened we had some good scoring chances we didn’t cash them in.”
“Their big guns plastered the score sheet that’s what teams need to win hockey games” said Strachan.
The Lakers will now hit the road again on January 10th to meet the third place North Stars in a 7:30 p.m (EST) in Thunder Bay while the Ice Dogs head to Thief River Falls on January 13th to take on the CJHL number one ranked the Thief River Norskies in a 7:00 p.m (CST) puck drop.