Lakers end first half with split against Norskies


The Fort Frances Lakers got two goals apiece from Kyle Uzelman and Flynn Perry to help them double the Thief River Falls Norskies 6-3 in SIJHL action back on Dec. 20 at the Ice For Kids Arena.
After falling to the Norskies by a 6-2 count the previous evening in Thief River Falls, Fort Frances (12-15-2) got going in their quest for the home-and-home split as Uzelman tallied twice in the opening frame to help send the hosts on their way.
Second period play saw each side score twice with Nick Harder and Isaac Baron connecting for the Norskies (14-10-2) while Matthieu Harrold and Perry countered for the Lakers.
In the third, Cameron Murray brought the visitors back to within one at 5:57, only to see Perry strike 41 seconds later to make it a 5-3 game.
Stone Stelzl then helped secure the win with a late empty-netter to round out the scoring.
The Lakers held a slim 35-34 advantage in shots, with Dean Buchholz earning the win and Caleb Sauer suffering the loss.
The night prior, the Norskies used a three-goal second period to cruise to victory in the opener.
Each side scored once in the first period, with Tyler Malpass giving Fort Frances and early lead, only to see Baron counter for Thief River Falls a couple of shifts later.
The Norskies struck three times in rapid succession as Bryce Johnson, Jack Michels and Nick Harder all connected in the opening two minutes of the frame.
After Harrold got one back for the Lakers at 14:05, Michels added another shortly afterwards.
The hosts picked up some insurance 11 minutes into the third as Mason McIntosh rounded out the night’s scoring.
Seth Purcilly made 31 stops to nab the win for the Norskies.
Dylan Kosik started for Fort Frances and suffered the loss, allowing five against on 24 shots while Bucholz handled six-of-seven attempts in relief.
The fifth-place Lakers will resume second-half SIJHL action tomorrow night when they head to Thief River Falls to open another home-and-home series against the fourth-place Norskies.
Fort Frances then will host the finale on Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. at the Ice For Kids Arena.