The Miller Aces and Morris Mavericks were winners as the Zone 4 High School Hockey League playoffs got underway Monday night.
Miller 9 Garden Valley 4
Kirby Sawatzky and Ryan Smiley each had two goals and two assists as Miller downed Garden Valley 9-4 in Altona. Bryson Loewen, Logan Bueckert, Colton Harder, Parker Sawatzky and Wyatt Henry also scored for the Aces. T.J. Mataszewski scored on a penalty shot and also had a pair of assists for the Zodiacs. C.J. Lampkin, Arlen Peters and Peter Enns rounded out the GVC scoring. Miller goaltender Ryan Geirnaert made 26 saves while Zodiacs netminder Odin Pauls faced 44 shots. Game two in the best-of-three quarterfinal goes Thursday (6:15 p.m.) in Winkler. The Aces were scheduled to play Portage Collegiate in round one. The Trojans defeated GVC 6-3 in the 8 vs 9 play-in game Sunday afternoon but because PCI used an ineligible player, the Zone 4 High School Hockey League awarded the game to the Zodiacs.
Morris 5 Carman 0
Jordan Keck scored twice and Ryan Columbe stopped all 20 shots he faced as Morris blanked Carman 5-0. Max Collette, Daniel Isaak and Justin Keck also scored for the hometown Mavericks. Cougars goaltender Alex Clemis faced 26 shots. Game two goes Wednesday (7:30 p.m.) in Carman.
The other two series start tonight. Northlands Parkway will meet the Pembina Tigers in Winkler and the Morden Thunder face the Prairie Mountain Mustangs in Swan Lake.