Friday, July 3, 2015

Lakers rally for victory

Cody Wickstrom may have just earned honourary membership with the DLM Line.
The Fort Frances Lakers’ defenceman teamed up with the SIJHL’s most potent forward trio to pull out a 6-5 victory over the Minnesota Iron Rangers last night in Hoyt Lakes.

Wickstrom finished with three points, including an assist on Lyndon Lipinski’s hat-trick goal on the power-play at 4:19 of the third before scoring the game-winner at 14:17.
Lipinski had a monster night as he had a hand in every Lakers’ goal to finish with six points.
The DLM Line was on fire all night, combining for 14 points for Fort Frances (36-6-1-2).
Mason Meyer lit the lamp once and added four helpers while Lucas DeBenedet netted his league-leading 41st goal of the season during another man-advantage and had two assists.
“This line to date in my coaching career has no doubt stood out for their accomplishments,” praised Lakers’ head coach and general manager Wayne Strachan.
“The way they feed off one another and gel is remarkable.”
The Iron Rangers (25-12-2-4), who beat the Lakers 2-1 in overtime last Wednesday, led 2-0 after the first on goals by Noah Anderson (power play) and Matt Audet.
But the Lakers outscored their hosts 4-2 in the second—erasing three separate deficits in the process to send the game into the third tied.
Ben Rauschnot and Trevor Hoth replied for the Rangers in the second before Hoth notched his second of the night at 6:20 of the third to square the contest once more.
Devin Tappenden continued his steady play of late, making 11 saves over the final two periods to win his third-straight outing after relieving Jordan Cartney, who was pulled after allowing two goals on 10 shots in the first.
“I’ll be honest, I wasn’t impressed with the first goal,” Strachan said about Cartney’s play.
“The second we had a defensive breakdown and put Cart in a tough position. . . .
“In no way do I blame ‘Cart’ for the first-period outcome,” added Strachan.
“It was just something I thought would be good for the team at the time.”
Alex Reichle turned aside 28 shots in a losing cause for Minnesota.
Donovan Cousineau, meanwhile, returned to the Lakers’ lineup for the first time since suffering a knee injury Nov. 9 against the Dryden Ice Dogs.
“I believe for his first game in almost three months, he played well,” Strachan of Cousineau, who played left-wing with Bryce Lipinski and Patrick Sofer and also spent time centering Hunter Leishman and Cam Gobeil.
“You see what he adds to our team in the speed factor, poise with the puck, and a player that can add to our special teams,” Strachan noted.
Cousineau’s return was offset by the absence of forward Kevin Kurm, who is out seven-10 days with a nagging back injury.
In other news, Strachan said defenceman John Dora is likely more than a week away from practising after a head injury suffered last weekend while forward Colton Spicer remains out indefinitely with a shoulder injury.
As well, Strachan announced forward Ryan McQueen currently is suspended from the team due to an “off-ice situation,” with his status to be re-evaluated in the coming days.
The Lakers head back out on the road tomorrow night to face the Thunder Bay North Stars (29-8-1-4).
Then they return home for a rematch with the Iron Rangers on Saturday night.

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