The Fort Frances Lakers were taking care of business by working overtime.
Maverick Lynes netted the game-winner with 40 seconds left in the extra session to give the Lakers a 3-2 win over the host Thief River Falls Norskies in SIJHL action Saturday.
Dylan Kooner and Jared Virtanen drew the assists.
With the victory, Fort Frances (8-9-1-3) moved within two points of the Norskies (9-10-1-3) for fourth place while also holding two games in hand.
Connor Keith notched his first goal as a Laker at 8:45 of the first period on the power play.
Brandon Zajicek then made it 2-0 at 3:18 of the third with his first goal in 11 games dating back to Oct. 22.
But Cameron Jones and Mitchell Soderberg scored for the expansion Norskies to send the game to overtime.
Dakota Delbridge improved to 2-1 as a Laker after a 46-save performance while Ryan Buttazzoni took the loss.
The Lakers also coughed up a two-goal lead in the third period here Friday and were not as fortunate—falling 5-4 in a shootout to the second-place Dryden GM Ice Dogs (16-3-3).
Trey Palermo scored the Ice Dogs’ lone goal of the shootout when he went five-hole to beat Brandon Bodnar.
Dryden goalie Ben Dennis did the rest—denying Ian Jarvis and Matt Tustin before Kooner shot wide on the Lakers’ last chance.
Palermo also scored in the second period to make it 2-1 until Jaden Gustafson tied it just 1:55 later.
Kooner and Virtanen then tallied just over three minutes apart early in the third put the Lakers up 4-2.
But Nic Noseworthy scored twice to tie the score—the second coming with just 33 seconds left in regulation time and Dennis on the bench for an extra attacker.
Kooner netted the Lakers’ first goal on a power play while Jacen Bracko (power play) had Dryden’s other goal.
The Lakers next head up Highway 502 for another game with Dryden on Wednesday.
Then they’ll host the Norskies this Friday at 7:30 p.m. at the Ice For Kids Arena, with the theme being “Face Off With Youth Homelessness.”
Fans are asked to bring along a non-perishable food item to support “The Push For Change.”
The fundraiser is based around the current national journey of former street youth Joe Roberts, who is pushing a shopping cart 9,000 km across Canada over 17 months as part of a national awareness campaign to help end youth homelessness.
He started May 1 from St. John’s, N.L.
Roberts won’t be passing through Fort Frances during his trek, sticking along Highway 17 once he reaches Thunder Bay in mid-March.
He hopes to reach the Ontario-Manitoba boundary by mid-April, with the expectation of arriving in Vancouver by the end of September.