The Portage Terriers tickled the twine ten times tonight as they rolled over the Winnipeg Freeze. The Dogs redeemed themselves after a loss last night in Selkirk with a 10-3 victory on home ice.
The Terriers led this game for over 59 minutes as Noah Wagner scored the opening goal 30 seconds into the game. Wagner picked up a helper on Brenden Holba's fourth of the season a few minutes later, and the Terriers held the 2-0 into the first intermission.
Ryan Botterill went bar-down to make it 3-0 early in the second. Lochlan Stefanishyn got the Freeze on the board moments later on the breakaway but the Terriers' offence erupted from there.
Portage scored four goals in a ten-and-a-half-minute span. Holba tipped in his second of the game on the power-play, Austin Peters and Kian Calder scored within 11 seconds of each other, and Peters intercepted a pass in the offensive zone and tucked it five-hole. This offensive barrage brought the score up to 7-1 Terriers after 40 minutes.
Brock McDonald picked up his first as a Terrier in the third, and Botterill added two more goals to complete the hat-trick and move to second in the MJHL in goals with 29 this season. The Freeze beat Terrier goalie Jayden Catellier twice in the final frame but it was too little too late, as the Dogs went home with a 10-3 victory.
Forward Austin Peters had four points in the contest and says yesterday's loss added fuel to their fire.
"After the L in Selkirk, a lot of our vets (veterans) came into the room and said, 'We're a Centennial Cup team. That just can't be happening,'" Peters explains. "I know we don't have a lot of bodies in the lineup but every player is on this team for a reason. Everyone brings their own talent in their own way. So, we just came in with a new attitude, and it worked out in our favour."
The Terriers had just eight forwards and six defencemen to start tonight's game, and within five minutes, Jordan Murray left with an injury to make that five defencemen. Peters talks about how they've overcome the short bench as of late.
"You're on the ice every second shift, and it's definitely tough. You're usually going to be tired but the vets on our team have guided us and told us, 'Even though we're short bodies, it shouldn't matter. Everyone has their own role, and everyone has to do their job on the ice.' But we're definitely going to be happy for some of those important bodies to come back."
The Terriers will have Kaden Kohle and Parker Scherr returning to the lineup next game when the Dogs hit the road to take on the Niverville Nighthawks on Sunday.