By Woodard, Dale on December 9, 2019.
The Lethbridge Lightning salvaged a split in a weekend homestand, but had to do a little scrambling to do so.
The Lightning were defeated 7-3 by the Fort Macleod Mustangs in Ranchland Hockey League action Friday night at Nicholas Sheran Arena, but managed to rally for a 9-8 overtime win over the Kainai Braves Saturday, also at Nicholas Sheran.
The 1-1 weekend keeps the Lightning in first place in the league at 5-1-0-1, one point ahead of the 5-0-0-0 Nanton Palominos, who have two games in hand.
On Saturday, the Lightning had a 4-1 lead after the first period that evaporated and turned into a 5-5 tie after two periods of play.
The Braves opened up a late 8-7 lead before Lethbridge struck for the equalizer from Andrew Bergmann with five seconds remaining.
Bergmann provided the overtime heroics as well, scoring 2:22 into the extra frame.
Shay Wirll and Mack Differenz scored twice for the Lightning Saturday night, while James Price, Leo Lacourciere, and Cam Hurt added singles on a night when a mere two minors – one per team – were called.
Winston Day Chief scored three goals for the Braves. Payton Tailfeathers, Tylin Oka, Ty Day Chief, Trygve Many Guns and Kyson Day Chief scored once each.
Lightning goaltender Dean Skidmore earned the win. Ethan Soosay was in goal for Kainai.
On Friday, the Mustangs rang up the Lightning for four third-period goals to snap a 3-3 tie after two periods.
Cody Berube, Dayn Opel and former Mustang Leo Lacourciere scored the Lightning goals.
Logan Gable replied with four goals for Fort Macleod and Greg Schimanski, Kody Biggs and Wilbur Yellow Old Woman scored the other Mustangs goals.
Lightning goaltender Dillan Kelly stopped 33 of 38 Mustangs shots. Mustangs goaltender Mike Muir was busy, turning aside 47 of 50 shots.
Lacourciere was named the Integral Hockey Player of the Month for November.
In six games, Lacourciere has 10 goals and 16 points.
The Lightning are back at Nicholas Sheran Arena Friday when they entertain the Palominos in a battle of the top-two teams. Game time is 8:30 p.m.
Friday’s game is also Food Bank Friday, with the team asking fans to bring along a donation for the Lethbridge Food Bank.
The Lightning head to Brocket Saturday to face the Piikani Broncos at 8:30 p.m.
As well, the Lightning’s makeup game against the Palominos -originally scheduled for Nov. 30 in Nanton – has been rescheduled for Jan. 24.