Dylan Ruptash had a pair of goals and Caleb Allen made 50 saves, as the Yorkton Terriers downed the Melville Millionaires 5-4 in a shootout. Cade Kennedy scored in his season debut, while Karsten Kruska tallied the game winner in the shootout.
It was an even first period, but the Terriers found twine twice late in the first period. Greg Nelson netted his third of the year, with his point shot deflecting off a defender and past a surprised Jared Thompson. 55 seconds later, the Terriers extended their lead to 2-0. Lohgan Nimmo flipped the puck to Kennedy who sped around the defender and picked the top corner for his first of the season.
Melville responded early in the second period. A loose puck slid onto the stick of Caden Drury, and the Carrot River found Noah Wills, who made no mistake shorthanded, cutting the Terriers lead to 2-1. Yorkton restored their two goal advantage on the power-play. Brett Butz threaded a backdoor pass to a wide open Ruptash for his first career SJHL goal, and Yorkton led 3-1. Melville made it a one goal game again before the end of the frame. A Dalton Mayes turnover ended up on the stick of Brayden Fryfogle and the Mils forward quickly snapped a shot past Allen to make it 3-2.
The Terriers struck for the third time on the man advantage, this time late in the third period. A point shot from Mayes was initially stopped by Thompson, but the rebound snuck through the Melville net-minder, and Ruptash shoveled home the rebound for his second goal of the game to make it 4-2. However, the Mils would not go away. 30 seconds later controversy struck, as a point shot was deflected by an apparent high stick by Zach Cain, only for the goal to stand and the Yorkton lead was sliced to 4-3. A couple minutes later, Cain buried the equalizer after being left wide open at the side of the Yorkton net, lifting a shot past Allen.
Overtime solved nothing, despite the Millionaires having a power-play for the remaining 1:10 of the extra frame. In the shootout, Kruska had the lone marker, while Allen stopped all three Melville shooters. Special teams was a big difference in the game, as the Terriers went 3-for-6 on the power-play, while Melville went 0-for-9 on the man advantage.
The two teams will face each other in the rematch tomorrow night at the Westland Insurance Arena. The game will be broadcast on the GX 94 online only stream with pre-game at 6:50pm and play-by-play starting at 7:00pm.