By Fighting Walleye Staff
Oliver Paipoonge, ON – The Kam River Fighting Walleye got a late third-period goal from Matteo Salvatore to complete a two game weekend sweep over the Sioux Lookout Bombers at NorWest Arena.
Salvatore’s marker came just seconds after the Bombers had tied the game on a Jonah Smith shot from the slot that beat Walleye goaltender Ashton Sadauskas on his blocker side.
The tight finish on Saturday night came after the Walleye pulled off a nail-biting victory on Friday in the series opener. That game was decided in a shootout after Sioux Lookout erased a 3-0 Kam River lead with a tying goal late in the third period. Carter Poddubny’s shootout goal and Travis VanderZwaag’s 3 shootout saves were the difference in extra time for the Walleye.
For a few moments on Saturday night, it appeared as though the two teams would once again be heading to an extra frame, before Salvatore’s goal, his second of the weekend, stunned the visiting side and earned the home team two points.
18 year old rookie Carter Nailen, from Surrey, BC and recently acquired by Kam River from the Lloydminster Bobcats of the AJHL, scored the first two Walleye goals, the first two tallies of his junior career. Sioux Lookout’s Smith and Kam River’s Jett Mintenko traded goals late in the first to make the score 3-1 for the home side after the first period.
Braeden Duchesne scored his 5th of the campaign, midway through the 2nd, to give the Fish a 4-1 lead before the Bombers mounted their comeback. Owen Cotter scored two straight for the visitors, his 4th and 5th goals of the year, before the aforementioned Smith and Salvatore goals that came with less than 4 minutes remaining on the clock.
The win was Fighting Walleye goaltender Sadauskas’ league-leading 9th of the season.
Kam River outshot Sioux Lookout by a 50 to 25 margin on the night. The Walleye now head to Dryden on Friday for the opening contest of a two game series with the Ice Dogs.
The Bombers host the Wisconsin Lumberjacks for a three game series beginning on Thursday night.
G & G Excavating 3 Stars
3rd – Owen Cotter – SLB
2nd – Carter Nailen – KRW
1st – Matteo Salvatore – KRW