Daily Herald Staff
The Prince Albert Mintos are becoming quite the excavators.
For the second straight playoff round the Mintos have dug themselves a hole and tonight at 7 p.m. at the Art Hauser Centre they will try and avoid going any deeper as they host the Battlefords Stars in the second game of a best-of-five Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League semifinal series.
The Mintos, who lost the opening game of the series 7-1 on Tuesday in the Battlefords, were up to their chin in the opening round as the trailed the Tisdale Trojans by two games and were down 3-0 after 20 minutes of play in Game 3.
The club showed its resiliency; however, as they battled back to win the next two games in overtime and then hung on for a one-goal victory (all five games were decided by a single marker) in the decisive fifth game on Sunday.
It was obvious pretty early in Tuesday’s contest that the game would not be close as after Prince Albert tied it at 1-1 it was all Stars for the remainder of the match.
Despite outshooting the Battlefords 31-30 the Mintos just could not solve the netminding of Rylan Toth. They will have to do something about that tonight to avoid creating a chasm similar to what they experienced in the opening round.
Tuesday’s win marked the third straight time the Stars have beat the Mintos this year as the Battlefords won the last two regular-season meetings after Prince Albert claimed the first game and then had to settle for a 3-3 draw in the second outing.
Now that the Mintos know what to expect from the Stars, tonight’s game should be a lot closer and with the fan support the club has been receiving that should also provide an extra lift.
MINTO NOTES: Tournament passes for the upcoming Western Regional championship will be on sale at tonight’s game. The cost is $40 for adults and $30 for seniors and students. The championship, which will feature the Mintos as the host club, will have seven games to determine who will move on to the Telus Cup national tournament in Moose Jaw in mid-April. The Western Regional runs from April 3-6 at the Art Hauser Centre…Prince Albert is still without Carson Cayer and Braxx George as both are recovering from shoulder injuries…Game 3 of the semifinal round will be played in the Battlefords on Saturday…No dates have been posted yet for the other semifinal between the Notre Dame Argos and Regina Pat Canadians. That series should be starting this weekend.