A swing and a miss for the Cranbrook Bucks in an exciting Saturday night matchup with the Trail Smoke Eaters.
The Bucks didn’t take too much time to get things moving on the attack. A Luke Pfoh power play goal at 2:42 positioned Cranbrook for a 1-0 lead which they were able to keep through the duration of the opening period.
Trail managed to square up with the Bucks early in the second period. Zach Michaelis broke into the Cranbrook zone and fired a beauty wrist shot past Nathan Airey forty seconds into the middle frame to tie the game 1-1. The Smoke Eaters added one more when Corey Cunningham tallied on an odd-man rush to bring Trail to a 2-1 lead at 13:15, setting up an exciting third period.
Cranbrook jumped out to a 3-2 lead in the first five minutes and change of the third period, with Noah Quinn and Kellan Hjartarson scoring at 3:13 and 5:14. It looked like the Bucks would hold on to seal the win in regulation, but Trail had other plans. With just 1:55 to go in regulation time, Michaelis found the net for another timely goal to tie the game 3-3. Both teams had chances to break the tie in the dying minutes, but neither could find the net for buzzer-beater with overtime looming at Western Financial Place.
The five-minute overtime period nearly went the distance. Cranbrook held the edge of play for most of the 3-on-3 action, but a late rush produced a game-winning goal from Trail’s Coalson Wolford with just five seconds left on the clock, giving the Smoke Eaters a 4-3 overtime victory.
With Saturday’s setback, Cranbrook’s record falls to 8-5-1 with a .607 winning percentage. Despite the loss, the Bucks put up good numbers – outshooting Trail 36-34 and finishing 1/3 with the power play.
Cranbrook will lick their wounds and get back to the drawing board Sunday, with another tough task at hand in the form of the visiting Penticton Vees.
Opening faceoff for Sunday’s game versus Penticton is 4:00 pm Mountain Time.
- Trail leads season series 2-1.
- Tyson Dyck, Noah Quinn, Luke Pfoh extend point streaks (Dyck, Pfoh = 7 games – Quinn = 5 games).
- 5-3 home record, two straight losses at Western Financial Place.
- First ever BCHL regular season overtime finish in Cranbrook.