On Friday evening the Stampeders played host to the Neepawa Natives. After a strong finish to last season the Natives came into the season expecting big things. Coming into Fridays game with a 3-1 record, it looked like they picked up where they left off.
In the 1st period both teams seemed to be playing a little tentative. With neither team taking many chances, the shots were 10-9 in favor of your Stampeders. Both Swan Valleys Brett Evans and Neepawa’s Evan Robert were solid in the 1st frame, keeping the score knotted at zero.
The Stampeders came out in the 2nd with a little more jump and were able to pepper the Neepawa goal with several quality scoring chances. In spite of outshooting the Natives 14-5 in the period, the Stamps were unable to solve Robert.
The 3rd period began with more of the same. The shorthanded Natives seemed unwilling to match the speed of the Stampeders. With the Stampeders again winning the shot count, this time 17-9, Robert was forced to come up big again, and again he was up to the challenge. Not to be outdone, Brett Evans was solid if not spectacular in the Stampeders goal turning away all 23 shots in regulation including 2 saves in tight off of Natives leading scorer Ashton Anderson.
With both teams unable to find the back of the net, the Stampeders were headed to overtime for the 3rd time in 5 games. With about 2 minutes remaining in overtime, Stamps Dawson Waddell picked the puck up in his own end, made a nice end to end rush creating a 2 on 1 with Jaden Townsend, before sliding the puck across for Townsend to bury the game winner, giving the Stampeders the win.
The win puts the Stampeders record at 3-1-1, tied with Neepawa. The boys are back at it again tonight, playing host to the Winnipeg Blues. Puck drop is 7:30.