The local Knights of Columbus ‘AA’ PeeWee team finished with a 1-1-2 record to skate away with a third-place showing at a five-team hockey tournament in Atikokan over the weekend.
The KCs opened action Saturday morning with a 5-3 loss to the Elk 82s.
The Elks grabbed an early lead but Tyler Miller, assisted by David Pierce and Alex McQuarrie, knotted the score at 1-1 later in the first period.
The Elks jumped out to a 3-1 lead on a pair of second-period goal, then made it 5-1 with two more goals in the third before Josh Sigurdson, assisted by Paul Dobransky, scored to cut the gap to 5-2.
Justin Larson, assisted by Jared Bruyere, closed out the scoring with 19 seconds left but it was too little, too late.
But the KCs got back on the winning track in their second game later Saturday, nipping the Norwest Stars 4-3.
Bruyere, assisted by Pierce, put the Fort Frances squad up 1-0 in the first period but Norwest roared back with a pair of goals late in the frame to grab a 2-1 lead.
Then it was the KCs’ turn to fight back. Pierce, assisted by Scott Howarth and Miller, evened the score at 2-2 in the second frame before Miller, from Larry Pham and McQuarrie, put the Fort back into the lead.
Norwest tied the game later in the second but with just six seconds to go before intermission, Howarth, assisted by Andrew Perrault, netted the eventual game-winning goal.
The third period was scoreless.
In their third game against Dryden on Sunday morning, Pierce scored all three goals to help the KCs to a 3-3 tie with the Apollos.
After a scoreless first period, Dryden got on the scoreboard first in the second but Pierce, assisted by Pham and Cody Vold, tied the game at 1-1 less than five minutes later.
In the third frame, Pierce, assisted by Miller and Vold, put the KCs up 2-1 but Dryden stormed back with a pair of goals to make it 3-2 heading into the closing minutes of the game.
But the KCs weren’t to be denied, with Pierce (from Miller and Shaun Egan) completing his hat trick with just over three minutes to play to earn the tie.
In the final game at noon Sunday, the KCs squared off against the host Atikokan Flyers and battled to a 4-4 tie, this time giving up the tying goal with about five minutes left in the third period.
After falling behind 1-0 in the first, and then 2-0 early in the second, the KCs stormed back with goals by Miller (assisted by Howarth and Scott McFayden) and Dobransky (unassisted) to even the score.
Atikokan regained the lead just 16 seconds later but the KCs got goals from Pierce (assisted by Perrault and Pham) and Bruyere (Pierce) in the final 3:58 of the second period to lead 4-3.
But they couldn’t hold it in the third, giving up a goal with 5:02 to play while being held scoreless themselves.
Atikokan, which had finished in first place with six points after round-robin play, went on to win the tournament with a 3-1 victory over second-place Dryden in the championship game Sunday afternoon.
The Norwest Stars ended up in fourth place, followed by the Elk 82s.