FORT FRANCES, Ont. – An Isaac Baron goal, coming in the fifth round of the shootout, proved to be the difference as the Fort Frances Lakers outlasted the Dryden GM Ice Dogs 6-5 Friday in Superior International Junior Hockey League action at Ice for Kida Arena.
Dryden came out quickly, skating to a 2-0 lead on tallies from Eric Stout and Kyle Sargent only to see Fort Frances counter with markers from Brett Hahkala and affiliate Jake Barker, who collected his initial SIJHL goal.
Each side would also score twice in the second stanza with Cameron Coutre and Stout, with his 40th, connecting for the GM Ice Dogs and Barker and Baron for the Lakers.
Back and forth they went in the third as well with Curtis Magas putting the visitors back into the lead at 2:29, only to see Jaedin Ness force overtime for the host with 11:21 left in regulation.
After a scoreless five-minute OT, extra shots were needed to decide a winner.
There Ness of Fort Frances and Dryden’s Siebenga each scored on their teams’ third attempt while Barron tucked the decider between the legs of GM Ice Dogs goaltender Jordan While on his club’s fifth shot while Jacob Gnidziejko stymied Coutre on the last chance to give his squad the victory.
Noah Loveday and Jakob Ruck dished out two assists apiece for the Lakers as did Ryan Brandt for the GM Ice Dogs.
Gnidziejko finished with 55 stops through 65 minutes and four more in the shootout to record the win while Wilde faced attempts in the setback.
The outcome also determines Dryden will finish fourth in the regular season standings and will meet Fort Frances in a first-round playoff series beginning next week.
Photo credit: Clint Bruyere