Aurora Tigers 3 - Pembroke Lumber Kings 5
LUMBER KINGS EVEN RECORD WITH WIN OVER TIGERS
It was a little closer than they would have liked in the end, but the Pembroke Lumber Kings are back to .500 after a 5-3 win over the Aurora Tigers on Monday afternoon at CN Centre in Prince George, BC.
Steve Omelko’s goal at the 14:38 mark of the final period stood up as the winner as the Lumber Kings lost a 3-1 third period lead before coming back to pick up the victory.
Pembroke head coach Sheldon Keefe was pleased with his team’s effort, particularly after their lackluster showing against the host Prince George Spruce Kings on Saturday night in a 5-2 loss.
“It was night and day,” Keefe said of the Lumber Kings’ performance. “It was a different effort from our team, and that was the difference. We knew we could beat this team. Every team here is the same, every one of them is a champion. It is someone’s opinion that separates them.”
The Tigers got on the board first, as Daniel Michalsky poked the puck past Lumber Kings goaltender Paul Beckwith on an Aurora powerplay just shy of the nine-minute mark of the opening period.
Scott Campbell pulled the East Region champions even very late in the first 20 minutes, scoring his second goal of the tournament on a Pembroke man advantage.
The Lumber Kings took the lead for the first time late in the second period, as Adam Brace finished off a two-on-one with Omelko by batting the puck past Tyler Gordon.
Campbell pushed the lead to two three minutes later, scoring his second of the game by sliding the puck past Gordon after Brace’s shot had bounced off the end boards.
Two Michalsky goals within four minutes midway through the final period brought the Tigers even before Omelko’s point shot found the back of the net. Gordon was out of position on the play, appearing to be bumped by one of his own players.
Chris Laganiere rounded out the scoring with an empty net goal with 10 seconds to go, setting off a celebration on the Pembroke bench, and pulling the Lumber Kings to 1-1 at this year’s National Junior A Championship.
Campbell picked up his second straight Player of the Game award for Pembroke, while Michalsky was a deserving winner for the Tigers after his hat trick performance.
The Lumber Kings have Tuesday off before facing the Camrose Kodiaks on Wednesday afternoon, while the Tigers return to the ice at CN Centre on Tuesday night for a meeting with the host Spruce Kings.
TIGERS, LUMBER KINGS MEET IN ALL-ONTARIO BATTLE
Day three of the 2007 RBC Royal Bank Cup kicks off Monday afternoon in Prince George, BC as the Aurora Tigers and Pembroke Lumber Kings take to the ice at CN Centre for an all-Ontario match-up.
The Tigers are coming off a 4-2 win over the Selkirk Steelers on Sunday afternoon, a game in which they controlled the play for much of the game. Aurora used a combination of balanced offense and strong defense to pick up the victory, getting goals from four different players while holding the Steelers to 28 shots, few of them quality scoring chances.
Andrew Favot and Michael Dahlinger scored in the opening 10 minutes for the Tigers, who will look for another quick start against the East Region champions.
The Lumber Kings did not look anything like the team that had cruised through the postseason thus far in their tournament-opening 5-2 loss to the Prince George Spruce Kings on Saturday night, allowing three goals and getting outshot 20-3 in the game-changing second period.
Scott Campbell and Chris Laganiere were the only bright spots for Pembroke, scoring once and adding an assist each in the loss. The Lumber Kings will need more offense from their key players if they hope to keep pace with the high-scoring Tigers.
A win for the Tigers will lock up a semi-final berth, while a loss by the Lumber Kings will seriously hamper their chances at playing on the weekend. With both teams having so much to play for, expect a serious battle between these two Eastern teams.