We’re going the distance in the SJHL Quarterfinal as the Estevan Bruins were unable to finish off the Flin Flon Bombers on home ice at Affinity Place in Game 6.
The Bombers scored four unanswered goals to force a win-or-go-home Game 7 back in Flin Flon, defeating the Bruins 4-1 on Sunday night.
After stunning the Bombers in Game 5 on Friday, the Bruins returned home where they had a golden opportunity to complete the first round upset over Flin Flon in front of 1,952 fans that filled Affinity Place for Game 6.
The Bruins started the game strong and opened the scoring midway through the 1st period on the powerplay. Kade Runke gained the offensive zone and droppped a pass for Owen Miley who quickly passed the puck to a wide open Owen Barrow in the high slot. Barrow’s shot was deflected in front off of Mitch Kohner and past Flin Flon’s Harmon Laser-Hume to make it 1-0 at the 10:35 mark.
Then with only 10 seconds left in the period, a potential turning point in the game occurred as Kohner crossed the blueline and attempted to dump the puck in. The puck deflected awkwardly into the far corner and took the attention of both Kohner and fellow Bruins’ forward Ilia Chmelevski, as the two players collided hard and fell to the ice in pain. Neither player would return to the game, and the Bruins were down to 10 forwards for the remainder of the night.
In the 2nd period, Flin Flon came alive and started to take control thanks to two of their top scorers who were playing in their first game of the series, after missing the first five games due to injury.
Just 1:09 into the period, Jeremi Tremblay beat Cam Hrdlicka in tight to make it 1-1 in Tremblay’s series debut. Then the Bombers scored twice in 74 seconds midway through the 2nd period, as Alexi Sylvestre scored his 3rd of the series at 10:58 to give Flin Flon a 2-1 lead. Then Cole Duppereault, the Bombers’ leading scorer in the regular season playing his first playoff game, scored on his own rebound at the 12:12 mark to put Flin Flon ahead 3-1 after 40 minutes.
The Bruins came out in the 3rd period looking to replicate the script from Game 3, where they came back to win after trailing 3-1. However, it wasn’t meant to be in Game 6 as Flin Flon continued to apply heavy pressure to the Bruins for much of the 3rd period. The Bruins made a late push in the final half of the period trying to cut into the deficit, but were unable to beat Laser-Hume. Then at the 15:25 with the Bruins’ goalie pulled for the extra attacker, Flin Flon’s Lucas Fry scored into the empty net to round out the scoring in a 4-1 final.
Cam Hrdlicka (42/45) played very well again in Game 6 against a desperate Flin Flon squad, keeping the Bruins in the game late into the 3rd period. Harmon Laser-Hume (27/28) earned the win for Flin Flon.
The Bruins finished (1/6) on the powerplay, scoring a PPG in their 3rd straight game. Flin Flon finished (0/4) on the man advantage.
As mentioned, 1,952 fans attended Game 6 at Affinity Place as the Bruins’ faithful showed their support on Sunday night. The 50/50 jackpot totalled $26,530, with the winner taking home half that amount.
Bruins’ fans are now hoping for another road win as the series shifts back to the Whitney Forum in Flin Flon for the deciding Game 7. Puck drop is at 6:30pm SK time on Tuesday night.