By Tanner Schafer
Rice Lake, WI – In a home game played in a new rink the Wisconsin Lumberjacks scored 2 3rd period goals to secure a sweep of the Fort Frances Lakers and tighten their hold on 6th place in the SIJHL standings.
Off the heels of an overtime victory in Fort Frances on Friday night the two teams met in Rice Lake, Wisconsin to do battle again. The 1st period was encouraging for the Lumberjacks who controlled the pace of play despite not being able to score the game’s 1st goal. Shots were 13-4 in favor of Wisconsin with a couple of minor penalties being called, as well as a game misconduct to Brandon Gustafson for checking from behind.
The Lumberjacks continued to outshoot the Lakers in the 2nd period but Fort Frances found the back of the net 1st. 8 minutes into the 2nd, Clark Scaddan beat Wisconsin’s new goaltender Riley Burnett to open the scoring. A few minutes later Sutton Majeske would answer back for the Lumberjacks scoring his 2nd goal of the season unassisted.
The game stayed tied heading into the 3rd where it seemed Fort Frances had finally found even footing in the game outshooting Wisconsin 13-11. But it was the Lumberjacks who were able to convert shots into goals. With just over 5 minutes remaining Ryan Kayser scored on the powerplay to give Wisconsin the lead. The Lumberjacks would also add insurance in the last minute of the game with a breakaway goal from captain Dillon Phillips, his 10th of the year.
Riley Burnett saved 23 of 24 shots and got his 1st win in goal for the Lumberjacks. Lukas Toth had 35 saves in a losing effort. Both teams now head into a break before the SIJHL resumes in 2024.
1st Star – Riley Burnett, 23 saves
2nd Star – Ryan Kayser, 1 goal
3rd Star – Lukas Toth, 35 saves