© Herald Phto by Dave Leaderhouse
Tisdale netminder Kye Steinke reaches behind him to try and snag a loose puck before it crosses the goal line, but Kody White's shot would eventually get in the open cage to tie the game midway through Thursday's Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League game at the Art Hauser Centre. White, who is partially obscured by Tisdale defender Cory Thomas and Minto teammate Carson Cayer, finished the game with two points and was Prince Albert's star of the game.
The Prince Albert Mintos are looking more and more like a M*A*S*H unit, but not even Hawkeye, Radar and Klinger would be able to keep this group together and get them ready for battle.
Already down three players to injury and another to suspension, the Mintos lost yet another veteran player during Thursday’s 4-3 overtime loss to the Tisdale Trojans at the Art Hauser Centre.
Braden Lozinski (knee), Dakota Boutin (shoulder) and Lance Yaremchuk (groin) were already in sick bay when Braxx George was taken to the hospital with a suspected shoulder injury. Throw in Lochlan Morrison with his one-game suspension for a game misconduct picked up in Saturday’s 7-1 loss to Tisdale and the Mintos are getting pretty lean on the bench.
“The boys are pretty fatigued,” admitted Todd Becker, the Mintos’ assistant coach. “We’re proud of the effort and no one quit. The biggest thing is to get back on track and recover from the injuries.”
The loss, combined with Moose Jaw’s 2-2 tie against the Notre Dame Argos on Thursday, leaves the Mintos and Generals in a third-place tie. Those two teams will square off in a key match-up on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at the Art Hauser Centre.
The two points Tisdale picked up with the win moves them to within three points of the Mintos and Generals with the Trojans still having a game in hand on Prince Albert. The Mintos are still in the running to finish first – they are four points back of the Argos and Battlefords Stars - but with just five games left on the schedule, Becker says getting players back in the line-up is the most important thing the team is keying on right now.
Even with the player shortage the Mintos jumped into a 2-0 first-period lead on Thursday on goals by Teal Sobkowicz and Carson Cayer.
A steady diet of penalties in the second period, however, cost the Mintos as the Trojans scored three times in a seven-minute span with Prince Albert product Drew Warkentine getting the go-ahead marker for Tisdale.
Kody White evened the contest at 3-3 midway through the third period, but a breakdown in the neutral zone early in overtime allowed Liam Chornawka to bag the winner.
“We talked a lot before the game about protecting the middle of the ice, but we didn’t do that (in overtime),” said Becker. “We had a good first period and the second got away from us.”
Connor Ingram finished the game with 31 saves in the Prince Albert net while Kye Steinke was tested 30 times in the Tisdale goal.
MINTO NOTES: Prince Albert had to kill off nine powerplays in the game with Tisdale connecting on just one of those. The Mintos had five manpower situations and also registered one goal with the extra man. With all of the penalties, however, the flow to the game was tampered for long stretches…Brought in to help with the manpower situation were Austin Odnokon and Josh McDougall from the Midget AA Dmyterko Enterprises Raiders…Morrison will be back in the line-up for Saturday’s game against Moose Jaw, but just Yaremchuk is a possibility to return from the injured list…Prince Albert will conclude its home portion of the schedule on Sunday when the Notre Dame Hounds visit the Art Hauser Centre for a 1:30 p.m. start. The Mintos will finish the season with three games on the road with the final game in Saskatoon against the Contacts on Feb. 23.