The Winkler Flyers suffered their first loss of the season dropping a 6-5 decision to the visiting Selkirk Steelers. The game featured the top two teams in the Addison Division both entering the contest undefeated. The Steelers were able to strike three times on the powerplay to remain perfect early in the year.



The Flyers offensive talent has been on display in a big way to start the year with 14 goals scored in their first two games and the fans were treated to another exciting, action packed game.



Derek Gingera gave the Steelers an early 1-0 lead just over three minutes into the game before Matt Loopkey banged in his sixth of the season on the powerplay. The Steelers took the lead back in the penalty filled first period at the 12:49 mark, but the Flyers had a reply to that one too. Once again it was Matt Loopkey who was in the right place at the right time to knock in his second powerplay goal of the period to draw the Flyers even after 20 minutes.



Joel Ridgeway pulled the Steelers back in front five minutes into the second with yet another power play goal. Just over five and a half minutes later Seth Ronsberg pocked the puck between the legs of Steelers starter Joey Rewucki and the game was tied again. The Flyers took their first lead of game at 16:28 when the hard working line of Jory Mullin, Chapen Leblond, and Michael Wilgosh joined the offensive party. Wilgosh was the one to light the lamp and the Flyers were up 4-3. But just under a minute later the Steelers point shot deflected off the leg of first year Steeler Steven Zacharias and the game was tied again after two periods.



The third period didn’t start very well for Winkler as Ridgeway netted his second of the game just over a minute into the period and the road team was back out in front. Exactly five minutes later forward Chapen Leblond stripped the puck from the Steelers defense and drove to the net. He cut across the crease and slid the puck past Rewucki to tie the game at five with 13:50 to play.



The intensity of the game seemed to get better as the game wore on as these two bitter Addison Division rivals reacquainted themselves with eachother. The Flyers seemed to have momentum on their side after Leblond’s tying goal but their bubble was popped by Joel Ridgeway once again who completed the hat-trick with 10:55 to play, letting a slapper go from the left side faceoff circle and over the shoulder of Peter Alexander to put the Steelers out in front to stay.



Despite a last ditch effort with the net empty, the Flyers could not create any late game heroics and were handed their first loss of the 2010/2011 MJHL season.



Peter Alexander allowed six goals on 35 shots while the Flyers fired 41 pucks at Steelers netminder Joey Rewucki. Each team had five powerplays. The Flyers scored twice on the man advantage while the Steelers struck three times.



The Flyers, who are now 2-1 on the season will hope to return to their winning ways when they host the 0-1-4 Winnipeg Blues on Sunday night to conclude their two game weekend homestand. The Flyers and Blues are tied for second in the division despite the Blues not winning a game yet and earning all of their points thanks to overtime losses.



Sunday’s game is a rematch of Tuesday’s 7-6 overtime win by the Flyers. Puck drop is 7:30pm at the Winkler Recreation Complex.



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photo taken by Rick Hiebert