DRYDEN, Ont. – Xavier Halterman’s second goal of the game, coming 1:38 into overtime, was the difference as the Dryden GM Ice Dogs held off the Thief River Falls Norskies 6-5 Saturday in a back and forth Superior International Junior Hockey League match-up at Memorial Arena.
Thief River Falls did open the scoring 2:39 into the contest as Justin Schwartzmiller capitalized off a Dennis Fisher feed.
Dryden came back to tie it a couple minutes later as Curtis Magas sent Josh Weber in alone on a breakaway and he made no mistake, firing a low shot through the legs of Norskies netminder Joshua Seeley.
The visitors went back on top late in the first as Tyler Johnson finished off a man advantage opportunity.
Near the midway point of the night, Halterman drew the GM Ice Dogs level once more as his high-rising attempt from the right point found its way into the top of the net.
Dylan Winsor then gave the hosts their initial lead of the evening as his eighth of the season made it 3-2 after two.
Up a skater early in the third, Thief River Falls levelled the proceedings once more as Schwartzmiller supplied his second of the evening.
Countering, Dryden struck twice in less than a minute as Jesse Mistelbacher from close range and Malcolm Huemmert on a wrap around made it 5-3 Dryden.
The Norskies got one back at 9:07 as Connor Kalthoff intercepted a clearing attempt, then fed Schwartzmiller who teed up Bryce Johnson for a one-timer from the left of the net for his 14th.
Pulling Seeley with 2:35 remaining for an extra attacker in an attempt to try and tie it and force overtime, Thief River Falls did just that on a goal-mouth scramble that saw Schwartzmiller collect a loose puck from behind the net where he darted in front and lifted in the equalizer at 19:42 for his first career SIJHL hat trick.
Heading to OT, and skating three aside, the free-wheeling session saw the GM Ice Dogs eventually prevail as a diving Samson Mouland broke up a Norskies two on one and helped send Dryden on an odd-man rush that was finished off by Halterman, who made a quick move to his left and slid in the game-winner past the out-stretched pad of Seeley to end it.
Shots on goal finished up 45-42 in favours of the hosts with Jacob Anthony getting the win while Seeley’s efforts helped his side earn a point in defeat.
Photo credit: Kayla Redsky Morrison