The Estevan Bruins were unable to carry a winning streak into an extended layoff as the Melville Millionaires came into Affinity Place and skated away with a 5-1 win over the Bruins.
After a highlight-filled Friday night 6-4 win over Weyburn, the Bruins were looking for their first 3-game win streak of the season hosting Melville for the first time this season. But the Millionaires, who have been improving since starting goaltender Berk Berkeliev returned since the opening weekend, instead controlled the game throughout.
Melville jumped out to a huge early-game lead in the 1st period scoring three unanswered goals on Bruins’ goaltender Randy Cooke to quickly quiet the Estevan crowd. Zach Bannister (8:26 – PP), Nic Porterfield (10:14), and Payton Jerome (19:44 – PP) put Melville up 3-0 after 20 minutes.
Melville would build on their lead in the 2nd period thanks to a pair of goals from Nic Porterfield (7:07 and 18:11) to give the Millionaires forward a hat trick and Melville a 5-0 lead.
The Bruins would break Berkeliev’s shutout bid in the 3rd period with a born-and-raised Estevan product getting his first career SJHL goal. At the 7:21 mark, Kersey Reich would pass the puck up to Tyson Manz would skated up through the neutral zone and over the blueline. Manz dished the puck through a defender for Mason Strutt who took the puck hard to the net and went backhand to forehand to jam the puck through Berkeliev to make it 5-1.
That’s as close as the Bruins would get however, as Melville shut things down after Strutt’s goal to defeat Estevan 5-1.
Randy Cooke (29/34) was tagged with the loss for the Bruins as the rookie netminder is still searching for his first career SJHL win. Berk Berkeliev (41/42) earned the win for Melville with a solid performance in goal.
The Bruins lost the special teams battle, going (0/6) on the powerplay while Melville executed on (2/7) on their opportunities.
The Estevan Bruins (7-10-2-1) now embark on a 10-day break between games and won’t be back in action until Tuesday, November 19th when they start a 4-game in 5-night road trip taking on the Kindersley Klippers.