A three goal third period gave the Lloydminster Bobcats their first three game winning streak (regular season) since February 27, 2016.
The third period outburst propelled the Bobcats to a 4-2 victory over the visiting Drayton Valley Thunder Saturday night at the Civic.
Coming off of a 4-3 OT win over the North Division leading Fort McMurray Oil Barons last night, the Bobcats were a little slow coming out of the gate against Drayton.
At the 5:01 mark of the opening frame, the Thunder directed the first shot of the game on goal and got the puck past Bobcats goalie Liam McCloskey, who was making his first start since October 25.
It was Ethan Green who was able to get the puck by McCloskey, for his second career AJHL goal and first as a member of the Thunder. Just over four minutes later it was Green in the right place at the right time again to score his second of the game and extend the Thunder’s lead to 2-0.
The Bobcats appeared to use Drayton Valley’s second goal as an alarm to get rolling, and the home side began to control the play.
With 8:55 to go in the opening frame Zach Kaiser waited out a sprawling defender before sending a pass to Tucker Scantlebury in front of the net, who one-timed a shot past Thunder goalie Tymen Edelkoort III to cut the lead in half.
Just before the end of the first, the Bobcats nearly tied the game but Edelkoort stoned Kaiser, as he and Kobe Walker had broke in 2-on-0.
Trailing 2-1 after 20 minutes of play, Lloydminster went on to outshoot the Thunder 17-8 in the second period but neither team was able to score.
Once the third got underway it didn’t take long for the Bobcats to even the score.
Just over four minutes into the frame, Kobe Walker picked up a loose puck off an offensive zone face-off, cut to the middle of the ice and beat Edelkoort high blocker side to make it 2-2.
Shortly after tying the game, the Bobcats found themselves on a 5-on-3 power-play and it didn’t take long for them to take advantage.
Just eight seconds into the 5-on-3, Walker set-up Daniel Hilsendager for a one-timer, and the ‘C’ rated prospect by NHL Central Scouting hammered the puck into the Drayton goal to give the Cats their first lead of the night.
In a last ditch effort, the Thunder pulled their goalie late, but a perfectly angled bank shot from his own end got Zach Ziegler his first ever AJHL goal and sealed a 4-2 win for the home side.
In the end, the Bobcats outshot the Thunder 38-21.
The Cats went 2 for 5 on the power-play, while Drayton Valley finished 1 for 6 with the man-advantage.
Lloydminster will now go for their fourth win in a row on Wednesday when they host the Spruce Grove Saints.