Courtesy of Bruce Parker/brooksbulletin.com
Lloydminster Bobcats gave the Brooks Bandits a run for their money for 40 minutes but a third period surge proved the difference.
The Bandits scored three unanswered goals in the final frame to beat the visitors 5-2 in play on Dec. 21. It was the final game of the 2012 portion of the Alberta Junior Hockey League season for the Bandits.
Coach Ryan Papaioannou’s club played the contest without the services of defensemen Shane Pilling and Maddison Smiley along with forwards Mark Logan, RJ Reed, Anthony Petruzzelli and Dylan Bredahl. This opened the door for midget players Landon Welykholowa and Brett Schimmel to see some action.
The newcomers did not look out of place against the Bobcats who also did not play like a last place team. Every time the Bandits scored, the Bobcats countered with a goal of their own during the first 40 minutes.
Forward Madison Dunn (assist Dakota Mason) opened the scoring at 4:47 when he banged the puck into an open side of the net following a nice pass from Dakota Mason.
The Bobcats then went to work and tested goaltender Michael Fredrick with several tough shots. Fredrick was equal to the task but could not stop Jason Wark from scoring on a two-on -one break at 19:53.
The Bobcats out shot the Bandits 11-7.
Second period action had the Bandits once again going into the lead when Anthony Paskaruk (Corey Scammon) scored eight seconds into a power play at 2:18. It was Paskaruk’s eight goal and 26th point of the season.
The Bandits dominated the period but could not beat goaltender Chase Martin.
At the other end of the rink, Grant Baker’s soft shot eluded Fredrick to once gain put the Bobcats on even ground at 16:21. Lloydminster only tested Fredrick four times in the period.
The Bandits stormed out of the gate in the third period and took control of the contest.
Forward Taylor Makin displayed his speed when he swept around the defense and out waited Martin to score what turned out to be the game winner at 2:35. Defenseman Corey Scammon drew the lone assist.
Patrick Lee (Tyson McCallum and Brandon Bruce) upped the count to 4-2 at 12:45. Lee (Cam Maclise and Chris Muscoby) then closed out the scoring with a power play goal at 17:31. The final marker was his 16th goal of the season.
The Bandits out shot the Bobcats 28-18 and were good on two of seven power plays. The Bobcats failed to connect on three chances with the man advantage.
The victory improved the record of the Bandits to 35-1 heading into the Christmas break.