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Lakers top Rangers

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Nick Minerva is not resting on his laurels.

Two days after being named the SIJHL’s top player for November, the Fort Frances Lakers’ defenceman dished out three assists in a 5-3 win over the host Minnesota Iron Rangers last night.

The Lakers (18-3-0-1) beat the Iron Rangers (9-13-2) for the sixth time in seven tries this season, and also moved six points up on the second-place Dryden GM Ice Dogs (14-5-1-2).

Christian Ripley and Roshen Jaswal, with his first since rejoining the team this past week, tallied power-play goals 2:40 apart in the first period.

Eric Madison cut into the lead at 14:36 of the opening frame before Tyler Lindstrom tied it at 15:40 of the second.

But Andrew Willner netted a power-play marker less than two minutes later to put the Lakers back in the lead.

After Robbie Bonthron made it 4-2 midway through the third, Minnesota hung tough with a short-handed marker with just over a minute to go.

The rally fell short, though, as former Iron Ranger A.J. Rupert added an empty-netter with 25 ticks left in his first game with the Lakers since being acquired in a trade earlier this week.

Pierce Dushenko made 24 saves to earn the win while Kyle Carignan had 28 stops in a losing cause.

The game was the last for Lakers’ forward Carter Chorney, who is heading to Leduc, Alta. for the Team Canada West selection camp that runs tomorrow through Tuesday.

Chorney is hoping to land one of 22 roster spots for the upcoming World Junior ‘A’ Challenge in Cobourg and Whitby, Ont. from Dec. 13-19.

Meanwhile, the rest of the Lakers are back on the road tomorrow when they visit Cochenour to battle the last-place English River Miners (7-11-1-4).

Their next home game is set for Dec. 12 against the Iron Rangers.

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