Turns out all the Dauphin Kings needed to get back on track in the Anavet Cup was a return to the friendly confines of Credit Union Place.
The Kings wrapped up the second Anavet Cup championship in franchise history on Thursday night, getting three-point efforts from Steven Shamanski, Zeanan Ziemer and Bryce Lamb in a 6-1 victory over the La Ronge Ice Wolves to complete a five-game series win.
The series win completed a remarkable run of success on home ice for Dauphin – the Kings went 28-2-1 at Credit Union Place during the regular season, and were 10-0 during the playoffs, a sparkling .927 winning percentage that bodes well for the RBC Cup hosts.
Dauphin won three consecutive games on home ice to wrap up the regional title after coming within three seconds of going down 2-0 to the upstart Ice Wolves in La Ronge.
After a 5-3 loss in Game 1 – just the second postseason defeat in 12 games for the Kings – Joel Kot scored at 19:57 of the third period of Game 2, forcing overtime, and Ziemer ended a marathon late in the second OT to even the series. The Kings then rattled off wins of 4-1, 5-3 and 6-1 back in Manitoba to claim their first Anavet Cup since 1983.
The Kings turn their attention to the National Junior A Championship – they open the tournament on Saturday, May 1, against either the defending national champions, the Vernon Vipers, or the AJHL-champion Spruce Grove Saints.