Minto 81’s hold on to edge Milverton
MILVERTON – A third-period goal by Trent Verbeek proved to be the winner as the Minto 81’s held on for a 6-5 victory over the Milverton Four Wheel Drives in Ontario Elite Hockey League play Saturday at the Perth East Recreation Complex.
The 81’s never trailed in the game. They scored the first three goals, but Milverton chipped away to reduce the gap to a single goal with 14 minutes to go in regulation time. Verbeek’s goal with 7:41 to go restored a two-goal advantage, but the hosts tallied with 4:04 to go to cut the gap back to the final one-goal difference.
Minto had the lone goal of the first period and added a pair of goals 45 seconds apart early in the second. The 81’s were up 5-3 at the end of the second.
Klayton Hoelscher scored twice for Minto while Verbeek, Owen Torrie, Caleb Warren and Steven Grant added single markers. The Grants, Steven and Robert, each had two assists while single assists were awarded to Ryan Litt, Hoelscher, Cole Pellett, Warren, Verbeek, Brenden Clayton and Adam Kawalec.
Brendan Schneider had a pair of goals for Milverton while singletons were added by Liam Buckley, Dennis Dewar and Erik Vander Eyk. Dewar and Curtis Rawn each had two assists while Colton Quipp, Reid Schwartzentruber, Jeff Fritzley, Derek Erb, Schneider and Riley Connors had one apiece.
Shots on net were not recorded.
Tim Bester was in goal for Minto while Thomas Gainer was in net for Milverton.
The 81’s scored on their lone power play of the game and they kept the Four Wheel Drives scoreless on two power plays.
Minto (9-4-0-1) and Saugeen Shores Winterhawks (9-6-0-1) are tied for third with the 81’s having two games in hand. Ripley Wolves lead at 11-1-0-3 and Creemore Coyotes are second at 11-2-0-1. Milverton is eighth at 5-11-0-0.
The 81’s, who have won five of their last six games, are to play three consecutive games at the Palmerston and District Community Centre to wrap up the home portion of their schedule. They have three road games after that.
The 81’s are to host the Lucknow Lancers (11th at 2-11-0-1) Friday at 8:30 p.m., Durham Thundercats (seventh at 8-5-0-1) Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Creemore Jan. 13 at 7:30 p.m.
- Guelph Sports Journal