The Estevan Bruins and Yorkton Terriers required extra time for the second straight game on Tuesday, December 18 at Affinity Place. As was the case in the first game, the Bruins had a third period lead that slipped away from them, and just as in the previous game in Yorkton, the Terriers made them pay for it in extra time.
Jared Legien scored twice, added an assist, and scored the only goal of the shootout, while Ryan Oullette made 27 saves for Yorkton as the Bruins fell 4-3 in a shootout to their Viterra Division rivals. Johnny Witzke, Devan Harrisson, and Bryce Platt replied for Estevan, with Grant Boldt making 26 saves in the loss.
The extra point gained was little consolation to the Bruins following their fourth straight loss to the Terriers.
"Their tying goal was on lost coverage," said Bruins head coach and GM Chris Lewgood. "Just a simple individual mistake, but we had lots of those tonight. Lots of times we lost our responsibilities and it cost us."
The Bruins opened the scoring and in fact never trailed in the game. After good work on the cycle by Tristyn DeRoose and Kolton Leslie, the puck popped out to Johnny Witzke in the slot, and Witzke unloaded a slapshot straight to the top shelf for a 1-0 lead.
Legien replied for the Terriers on a crafty shot using a defenseman as a screen midway through the first, firing it low-blocker on Boldt. The Bruins regained the lead on a penalty shot, however, off a scramble in the Terrier crease. Harrison was awarded the shot and made good for his second in three games as a Bruin.
"That was my first one," he said of the penalty shot. "He (Chris Lewgood) said my name and I didn't really know what to do. I figured against this goalie it was better to shoot on him. I'm happy it went in."
"I hate those guys actually," Harrison added of the Terriers. "We've been rivals ever since I was a kid and we always play intense games. It sucks losing to them."
The Bruins stretched their lead to 3-1 in the second when Platt followed up Michael McChesney's rush and whipped a shot past Oullette. But a string of power plays in the second gave Yorkton the time they needed to get back within one, with Legien again doing the damage offensively.
In the third, Legien struck again, this time with an assist, feeding it through a seam to Aiden Bulych, who ripped a shot over Boldt's outstreched glove to tie the game. Overtime solved nothing, and though the Bruins gained a point, they lost in the shootout as Oullette stopped Platt, Turner Ripplinger, and McChesney in succession.
"There's no satisfaction in that," Lewgood said. "We've got to be better. We have it in us to be the top team in the division ourselves and we just find ways to lose those games. We eliminate that, and we'll be in a lot better shape."
Harrison's goal was his second in three games with the Bruins. He has played largely with Aigne McGeady-Bruce as his partner and has seen time on the power play.
Platt's goal was his first since a 2-goal outing during a loss to Yorkton on November 20. He sits third on the Bruins with 12 goals in 29 games.
The Bruins finish the pre-Christmas schedule 16-18-3. They resume action against the Weyburn Red Wings on December 30.