Flames, Lancers advance to Championship Finals

In game one of the WWHSHL CTV Division 1 semi-final playoff series between the first ranked St. Mary’s Flames and the fourth ranked CJS Olympiens this week, the Flames narrowly defeated the Olympiens 2-1. The Olympiens came out strong in game 2 and defeated the Flames 3-1. With the series tied 1-1, St. Mary’s opened the scoring at the 13:38 mark (Balcaen, Kim, Steciuk) of the first period, and then added two more goals in the second period, one at 12:39 (Howorth, Rakowski, Geisbrecht) and another at 1:46 (Steciuk, Balcaen, Howorth). The Olympiens turned up the heat in the third period to deny all the Flames scoring chances, however, they were also unable to get on the board. Final Score: St. Mary’s Flames 3-0 and the series win.

In the hotly contested semi-final series between the second ranked Dakota Lancers and the third ranked Selkirk Royals, the Lancers captured game one 3-1, and the Royals answered with a sound 4-1 defeat in game 2. With the series tied 1-1, both teams played to win in the deciding game three. Just as it looked like the first period would be scoreless, the Lancers scored a breakaway goal at the 3:50 mark (Borsboom) and the Royals answered just before the buzzer at .08 (Truthwaite, Johnstone, Horbaty) for a first period score 1-1. In the second period, the Royals struck first with a goal at 12:03 (Hobraty, Goetz), but the Lancers dominated the rest of the period scoring four goals at 8:12 (Sharford, S. Neale), at 8:03 (S. Neale, Olfert, Shatford), at 6:51 (S. Neale, Neale, Rubigny) and a powerplay goal at 5:55 (Shatford, S. Neale). Second period score Lancers 5 vs Selkirk 2. In the third period, the Royals struck first again with a breakaway goal at 14:48 (Carter). However, the Lancers seemingly unstoppable line of Neale and Shatford answered the Royals goal with three more of their own for a score of 8-3 at the 5:27 mark. The Royals managed one more scoring rally with 2 minutes left on the clock (Desjarlais), but it was not enough to claim game three. Final score: Lancers 8-4 and the series win.

The St. Mary’s Flames and the Dakota Lancers will face off in the WWHSHL Championship Playoff Finals at the Dakota Community Centre March 7, 9 and 13 if necessary. For additional details, check the series schedule.