A three-goal outburst in the first period ultimately was the Fort Frances Lakers' undoing in a 5-2 loss to the English River Miners on Saturday night at the Ice For Kids Arena.
It was all Miners in the opening 20 minutes as the visitors got tallies from Ethan Wong, Nic Herringer, and Terix Fischer-Kobes' (power play) to set the tone early.
Jaedin Ness finally got the Lakers on the board at 11:43 of the second when he snapped a shot past Miners' goalie Michael Lenko with the man advantage.
He tallied again less than three minutes later when he put home a saucer pass from Nick Lucas to bring the Lakers within a goal at 3-2.
But Dante Tisi connected on a power-play chance just under a minute into third before Spencer Milne capped the scoring at 13:54.
Wong and Jacob Siebenga chipped in with two assists each for English River.
Lenko earned the win, finishing with 28 saves, while Ismael Ralsten stopped 27 shots in taking the loss.
The Lakers (15-30-2-4) are back in action Wednesday night when they host the fourth-place Miners (26-21-0-4) once again at 7:30 p.m. at the Ice For Kids Arena.
The Thief River Falls Norskies (38-9-2-2) lead the SIJHL with 80 points, with the Dryden GM Ice Dogs (35-7-6-2) right behind with 78.
The Thunder Bay North Stars (33-12-4-1) occupy third place with 71 points.
The Minnesota Iron Rangers (5-43-1-2) remain mired in the basement with just 13 points.