The Estevan Bruins used a pair of scoring outbursts at the end of the 1st period and the start of the 3rd period and cruised past the Notre Dame Hounds 6-2 on Friday night at Affinity Place.
Eddie Gallagher led the way offensively with a 4-point night, while the other five goals were scored by rookie forwards, and Keenan Rancier made 32 saves as the Bruins earned a crucial regulation victory over the Hounds.
Notre Dame would open the scoring 5:47 into the game as Hounds’ captain Jared Hamm scored shorthanded to make it 1-0. But the Bruins would respond by scoring three times in the final six minutes of the opening period to take the lead.
At 14:10, Brady Nicholas would score his 8th of the season from Gallagher and Devan Harrison to tie the game at 1-1. Then at the 18:11 mark, Troy Hamilton would bang home a rebound for his 8th goal of the year from Austin King-Cunningham and Gallagher on the powerplay to take a 2-1 lead. Then with only 7 seconds remaining, Tyler Savage scored his 9th goal off a pretty feed from Hamilton to make it 3-1 after the 1st period. Kade McMillen also assisted on the goal.
Notre Dame would trim the lead to 3-2 at the 7:58 mark with yet another shorthanded goal, as Sho Takai scored to make it a one-goal game heading into the final period.
But the Bruins would put the game out of reach early in the 3rd period with two quick goals. First it would be Cody Davis deflecting home his 6th goal of the year to make it 4-2, with assists to Harrison and Gallagher. Then Gallagher would keep the puck on a 2-on-1 and roof his 9th goal of the season to increase the lead to 5-2 at the 7:09 mark. Nicholas and Tylor Ludwar assisted on the goal.
The chippy game would boil over late in the 3rd period as Tylor Ludwar and Notre Dame’s Braydon Iwaschuk squared off for a fight after Ludwar laid a hard, clean, hip-check on Hardy Wagner. Both players got their shots in on the quick fight at the 14:06 mark.
Notre Dame would pull the goalie in the final minutes looking for a miracle, but the lone goal to be scored the rest of the game would be by Bruins’ forward Dain Sardelli who shot into the empty net from his own zone. Sardelli’s 6th of the season would round out the scoring in a 6-2 win for Estevan.
Keenan Rancier (32/34) earned the win in net, his first win in his last three starts despite only giving up 3 goals in the last two games he played in. Logan Dyck (32/37) was tagged with the loss for Notre Dame.
The Bruins went (1/4) on the powerplay thanks to Hamilton’s goal in the 1st period. Notre Dame was shut out (0/6) on the powerplay, but did score both their goals while shorthanded.