THUNDER BAY, Ont. – Dryden GM Ice Dogs goaltender Landon Pavlisin turned in another stellar performance as he finished with 45 saves to backstop his side to a 4-2 victory over the Thunder Bay North Stars Wednesday night in Game 4 of the Superior International Junior Hockey League’s Bill Salonen Cup final at the Fort William Gardens.
This best-of-seven match-up is now knotted at two wins apiece heading into Game 5 Friday at 7:30 p.m. CT at Dryden Memorial Arena. Game 6 is slated for 7:30 p.m. ET back at the Gardens in Thunder Bay.
An early power play helped Dryden to open the night’s scoring as Kris Hamlin double pumped and snapped a wrist shot from inside the blueline that beat Brandon Bodnar in the Thunder Bay net at 1:38.
The GM Ice Dogs extended their lead just over seven minutes later off a face-off win as a Woody Galbraith backhand effort eluded Bodnar short side to put the visitors up a pair.
Moving on to the middle stanza, Dryden went up by three at 13:49 as they notched their second man advantage effort of the night when Malcolm Huemmert banged in the rebound off a Hamlin point shot.
The North Stars would cut into the deficit before the session was complete at Brendan Gillis corralled the rebound of his own shot and whipped his chance past Pavlisin, who has been brilliant in the Dryden goal all series.
Up a man in the latter stages of regulation the home side pulled to within one at 17:09 as Kyle Auger sent a shot through a maze from the right point that found it’s way in.
With Bodnar pulled in favour of an extra attacker, Hamlin whiffed on a breakaway on the empty net and hit the post, but his GM Ice Dogs’ teammates bailed him out by getting him the puck once more where he made no mistake on his second opportunity to round out the night’s scoring.
While Pavlisin earned the win for Dryden, Bodnar stopped 32 of 35 in defeat for Thunder Bay.
SIJHL Bill Salonen Cup Final (Series E)
Dryden GM Ice Dogs vs. Thunder Bay North Stars
Best-of-seven series tied 2-2
Game 1: Dryden 3 Thunder Bay 2 (OT)
Game 2: Thunder Bay 3 Dryden 2
Game 3: Thunder Bay 2 Dryden 1
Game 4: Dryden 4 Thunder Bay 2
Game 5: Friday, April 20 @ Dryden 7:30 p.m. CT (Memorial)
Game 6: Saturday, April 21 @ Thunder Bay 7:30 p.m. ET (Gardens)
Game 7*: Monday, April 23 @ Dryden 7:30 p.m. CT (Memorial)
*- if necessary
Photo credit: Leith Dunick, tbnewswatch.com