With a total of 21 goals, rapid lead changes, penalty shots that mattered and a game decided on the sixth and final shooter, parents of the Bestech and West Nipissing peewees were in for a quite the roller-coaster ride.
When all was said and done, Tristan Burkholder would make no mistake on his backhand deke, tucking home the game-winning goal on a penalty shot attempt as Bestech outlasted West Nipissing 11-10.
The game looked safely in hand in the second period (teams were playing two, 12-minute straight-time periods) after Bestech took a 5-2 lead after one, increasing the lead to four goals early in period two.
But after Justin Lebeau narrowed the margin to 6-3, the frantic scoring that can occur in the free-flowing game opened the door for West Nipissing, knotting the game at 6-6 after finding the back of the net three times in 26 seconds.
The contest continued a back-and-forth flow, with Bestech holding a 9-8 lead after regulation time. As is standard for these types of tournaments, penalty shots replace the need for penalties to be served, with teams given a chance at the conclusion of the game to even the score.
West Nipissing scored on two of their three attempts, taking a 10-9 lead. After Carter Rollins scored on the first Bestech attempt, a miss would put the game on the shoulders of Burkholder, who came through with flying colours, recording his fourth goal of the afternoon.
Justin Gibeault netted a hat-trick for Bestech, Rollins matched that in addition to setting up a handful of markers and Braedan Newell added a solo markers for the winners, while Cody Giroux (4 goals), Lebeau (2), Cooper Kansela (2), Brayden Amyot and Zacharie Lavigne replied in a losing cause for West Nipissing.
The Minor Bantam House League final was not nearly so close as Espanola OPP jumped out to a 3-1 lead in the first, adding three more unanswered goals in the second, posting a convincing 6-1 win over Pro Energy.
Connor Tessier paced the mill-town boys with a hat trick, with Landon Morin adding a pair and Justin Leale chipping in with one of his own.
In Major Bantam rep play, Bradley Sutton and Eric Paquette scored two goals apiece, with Adam Greasley getting to within two minutes of a shutout as the Coyotes bounced Carleton Place 4-1.
In the Major Atom House League final, Taylor Scott scored with just ten seconds to play and goaltender Mireille Kingsley came up big on the one penalty shot she needed to stop, lifting the Lady Predators past the Valley East Renegades 4-3.
Following is a complete breakdown of the remaining finals from Sunday:
Major Atom Houseleague
Major Peewee Rep
Complete Players 7
Minor Peewee Rep
White Hawks 4
Northern Wolves 1
Major Bantam Houseleague
Sudbury Crushers 6
White Lightning 3
Minor Atom Rep
Valley Kids 6
Minor Bantam Rep
Hearst Lumber Kings 4
Minor Atom Houseleague
Blind River 3
Major Atom Rep
Complete Players 1
Posted by Mark Gentili