The Yorkton Bantam AA Terriers split their two contests last week against a pair of Queen City clubs.
The Terriers’ first match was on the road against the South Division’s first-place Regina Pat Blues on Tuesday, January 22.
The Terriers dug themselves in a hole in the second period, going on to the lose 5-2 to the Pat Blues.
“That period really hurt us,” said Terriers head coach Damon Kustra. “The Pat Blues are first in our division and they showed why in that period. It is really tough to battle back against a four-goal deficit, especially against a really good team. We weren’t able to get it done.”
Yorkton started the game off on a bright note with Brett Melnychuk scoring the first goal of the contest on the man advantage with 3:20 left in the opening period.
The Pat Blues’ Jake Heerspink quickly evened the score up, though. He potted his fifth on the year in the final minute of the period.
Regina took Yorkton to the cleaners in the second with Keelan Saworski, Ty Barnstable, Riley Woods, and JC Dubecky lighting the lamp to put the Pat Blues up 5-1.
Carson Welke netted one for the Terriers in the last minute of the third period, but it was obviously too little too late with Yorkton still down by three.
The Terriers returned home to the Farrell Agencies Arena on Saturday, Jan. 16 for their second game of the week against the Regina Silver Foxes.
Yorkton edged the Queen City Boys in the tilt, coming away with a 6-4 victory.
“I think we deserved to win,” said Kustra on the Silver Foxes’ victory. “It was a real back-and-forth game. It seemed every time we got ahead they would quickly match it and every time they got ahead, we would score not long after. Those games keep you on your toes.”
The two bantam clubs exchanged goals in the first period with Carson Welke scoring for the Terriers and Kellen Henry for the Silver Foxes in that order.
The Terriers’ Brayden Miller and Logan Foster potted markers for Yorkton in the second with Caleb Griffin and Mostyn Findlay matching them for the Silver Foxes, making it a 3-3 game.
Regina had some great offensive changes late in the second, but Terriers defenceman Tyler Stratechuk blocked two of their passes to keep the score tied.
“Plays like that sometimes go unnoticed, but they can be the difference in winning a game,” said Kustra on Stratechuk’s strong defensive play.
The Silver Foxes started out the final period in control, but the Terriers finished it. After Zako Milette notched one to put Regina up by a goal, Watson scored two, including an empty netter, and Miller netted his second of the game to finish out the contest.
“Miller and Watson had really good games for us,” noted Kustra. “They scored some goals that we needed for the win.”
The Terriers went 3-1-1 in January, placing them in sixth spot in the South Division.
Kustra is happy with his team’s January showing, noting they are only four points behind the second-place Swift Current Kabos Raiders in the South Division.
“I’m happy with how we did this past month,” said the Terriers head coach. “We are only four points behind Swift Current for second place in the division, so we are right in the mix. Some of the guys have stepped up and have really played some strong games for us.”
The 9-8-4 Terriers’ next match is against the Estevan Bruins in Spectra Place on Saturday, February 2.