By Gary Moskalyk
Thunder Bay, ON – Jamie Fuchs scored at 3:11 of overtime as the Thunder Bay North Stars defeated the Fort Frances Lakers 6-5. Conner Lemieux came in relief of Keenan Marks and recorded his 13th win.
Brendan Stroble faced 56 shots in the loss. Keenan Marks let in three goals on 12 shots, and Conner Lemieux came in relief and faced eight.
It was the Lakers first foray into extra time as all of their games have been decided in 60 minutes until now.
Thunder Bay skated off with a 3-2 lead after 20 minutes.
Ryker Watt collected a rebound off the glass scoring at 5:40 of the first period for a 1-0 Laker lead. Watt’s effort was his 22nd on a Laker powerplay. Edison Weeks became the third player in the SIJHL to reach 50 points with his 23rd goal from the slot.
Dylan Wedward scored unassisted on an end-to-end rush for a 2-1 Laker edge. Consecutive goals by RJ Dickie and Easton Glousher gave the North Stars the lead. Glousher’s 7th was an unassisted shorthanded effort.
Fort Frances had the game tied three-all after 40 minutes.
Ryker Watt collected his own rebound and netted his second of the game at 6:49. The Stars pulled Marks at this point and inserted Lemieux. Colby Feist gave Thunder Bay a 4-3 margin. Trevor Sanderson connected on a 5-on-3 to tied it again.
Dickie’s second of the game on a Stars powerplay gave the Stars a 5-4 lead. Darnell Kemp’s point shot had eyes as it found the top shelf through a pile of bodies to tie the game with 3:46 left.
The Stars dominated overtime with five shots to the Lakers none. Fuchs’ 10th, a backhander from in close, sealed the deal for Thunder Bay.
Dickie had two goals and an assist to lead the Stars offensively. Feist had a goal and two helpers. Fuchs added an assist.
Watt had two goals and an assist for the Lakers. Brady Wicklund had two assists.
Fort was 2-5 on the powerplay. Thunder Bay was 1-3. Thunder Bay took 29 of 40 penalty minutes.