After an early third period rally by Waywayseecappo which saw the Wolverines climb back to within one goal on Friday night, the resilient Oil Caps responded in a big way and eventually came away with an 8-4 win at Tundra Oil and Gas Place.
“I think with the puck, we were pretty solid tonight,” said Oil Caps head coach and GM Troy Leslie. “We made some good plays but also turned the puck over a bit too.”
After Drew Anderson’s fifth of the year just 49 seconds into the third period cut the Virden lead to 4-2, former Oil Cap Jesse Korytko made it 4-3 less than a minute later.
“It would’ve been easy to go into a shell after they scored two quick ones like that while we’re trying to protect the lead, but we kept pushing which is a good thing,” Leslie said.
The Oil Caps wound up scoring four times in the third as Dylan Thiessen got things started for the home team with his 12th of the season at the 6:17 mark followed by Jeran Knorr’s 16th of the year at 12:49, making it 6-3 for Virden. Korytko struck once again for the Wolverines, netting his fourth of the season to make it 6-4 before Tyler Kirkup’s 18th of the year at 15:40 and Hunter Cloutier’s sixth on the campaign at 16:08 rounded out the scoring.
“We had some guys who made some plays tonight and were rewarded for it,” Leslie added.
The Oil Caps got the game started on the right foot as Rylee Zimmer scored his 13th of the year just 31 seconds into the contest and it resulted in a flurry of stuffed toys being thrown on the ice as Friday’s game was the club’s annual Teddy Bear Toss night. All toys were collected and donated to Virden and Area Christmas Cheer.
Preston Seymour netted his second of the season to tie the contest just after the midway point of the period before Justin Lee’s third of the year at 16:34 gave Virden a 2-1 lead after 20 minutes of play.
“We’re really coming together right now,” Lee said. “It’s nice to get these wins under our belt.”
Kolten Kanaski scored his 13th of the year at 4:53 of the second before Graeme Hore’s 12th of the season at 9:02 made it 4-1 after two periods.
The win for Virden is the club’s fifth victory in seven games in the month of December as the club is now 21-10-1-0 on the year.
“We’re a skilled team but everyone likes to work hard, everyone is buying into the program,” Lee said. “Everyone is learning what it takes to win and it’s sure showing right now.”
Dalton Dosch picked up the win in net for Virden, turning aside 25 of 29 shots. The 18-year-old will be relied upon more over the next little while as netminder Riley McVeigh is nursing an injury he suffered against the Selkirk Steelers on Dec. 11 in Winnipeg at the MJHL Showcase.
“It’s an excellent chance for Dalton to step in and do what he does,” Leslie said. Tomorrow night will be a big test for everybody and Dalton will be ready for it.”
Up next for the Oil Caps: a road game in Steinbach tomorrow night against the Pistons. Game time for that contest is slated for 7:30 p.m.