Chiefs sweep

Kenora has now lost five of six games af­ter pair of losses to sec­ond placed Yel­low­head

Kenora Daily Miner and News - - FRONT PAGE - RYAN STELTER rstel­[email protected]­media.com

High fly­ing Yel­low­head beat This­tles twice in week­end se­ries.

The Kenora Mid­get AAA This­tles fal­tered this week­end against the sec­ond placed Yel­low­head Chiefs with a 7-3 loss Fri­day night and a 3-0 loss Satur­day night at This­tle Arena.

The This­tles have lost five of their last six games and are now out of the Man­i­toba Mid­get Hockey League play­off pic­ture af­ter the Win­nipeg Bru­ins beat the Nor­man North­stars 8-4 Sun­day.

The This­tles they cer­tainly had a bet­ter start than fin­ish in their 7-3 loss to the Yel­low­head Chiefs Fri­day night.

Thirty-one sec­onds into the game This­tle for­ward Ja­cob Frankcom took a feed from Ai­dan Shumka, snip­ing a shot from the face­off dot to open the scor­ing. A few min­utes later Reed Bod­nar raced into the Chiefs zone and beat Nathan Fal­loon to dou­ble the home team’s lead. This­tle cap­tain Cooper Wither­spoon made it 3-0 af­ter he walked in and went blocker side on Fal­loon.

Jake Poole gave the Chiefs life to­wards the end of the first pe­riod to bring Yel­low­head back into the game.

Chiefs for­ward Colby Wot­ton kept the mo­men­tum go­ing scor­ing off a face­off win by Bri­ley Wood two min­utes into the sec­ond pe­riod to draw within one.

Colby Joseph lev­elled things up for the vis­i­tors with a hard shot from the hash­mark. The very next shift Cooper Hat­field pre­vented Lo­gan Wot­ton from mak­ing it 4-3 af­ter go­ing cross ice and get­ting a pad on Wot­ton’s at­tempt.

A cou­ple min­utes later, with This­tle de­fence­man Bryson McDon­ald in the box for slash­ing, Wot­ton en­acted re­venge. Hat­field had no chance on his pin­point ac­cu­rate snipe off the post and in to give Yel­low­head the lead in the sec­ond.

“They made it 4-3 and we’re be­hind the eight ball,” said This­tles head coach Doug No­vak. “We’re fight­ing for our life.”

The life seemed to get sucked out of the This­tles as the Chiefs piled on three more goals in the third pe­riod. Yel­low­head’s fifth goal must be com­mended on what can only be a set play off a de­fen­sive zone face­off. Af­ter win­ning the draw Chiefs de­fence­man Owen Ware­ham sent a long stretch pass off the boards to a dart­ing Sloan Stan­ick who went fore­hand back­hand to give the Chiefs an in­sur­ance marker with 12 min­utes to go in the third.

“What killed us was tak­ing bad penal­ties,” No­vak said. “We could’ve won tonight but we started tak­ing self­ish penal­ties.”

Kenora took eight penal­ties com­pared to Yel­low­head’s four. The Chiefs went 2-for-8 with the man ad­van­tage.

In Satur­day’s re­match the This­tles played a more com­plete game, but a few mis­takes cost them.

A bad pinch at the of­fen­sive blue­line gifted the Chiefs a 2-on-1 op­por­tu­nity and Stan­ick waited for the per­fect mo­ment to slide the puck across to Wot­ton who made no mis­take.

A few min­utes later This­tle for­ward Tris­tan Houston was given a five-minute ma­jor and a game mis­con­duct for head con­tact. The call was up for de­bate as it looked as if the Chiefs player had fallen into the six-foot-two Houston.

Ei­ther way, the Chiefs cap­i­tal­ized on the pow­er­play to make it 2-0. There was no scor­ing in the sec­ond pe­riod, but the This­tles had a few good chances. Chiefs for­ward Parker John­son made it 3-0 late in the third to to­tally de­flate the This­tles.

Kenora makes a west­ern road swing next week­end with three games in three days against Cen­tral Plains, South­west and Bran­don. The road trip kicks off Fri­day, Dec. 7 at 8 p.m. against Cen­tral Plains.

PHO­TOS BY RYAN STELTER/DAILY MINER AND NEWS

Chiefs for­ward Zane MacDon­ald gets ready for a shot on This­tle goalie Cooper Hat­field in the sec­ond pe­riod of Yel­low­head's 7-3 win over Kenora at This­tle Arena on Satur­day, Nov. 30.

This­tle for­ward Reed Bod­nar bears down on Chiefs goalie Nathon Fal­loon in Man­i­toba Mid­get Hockey League ac­tion at This­tle Arena on Fri­day, Nov. 30.

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