Di Lullo surpasses 20-goal plateau as Miners defeat Iron Rangers

RED LAKE, Ont. – Michael Di Lullo scored twice Saturday to surpass the 20-goal plateau for this first time in his Superior International Junior Hockey League career as the Red Lake Miners went on to defeat the Minnesota Iron Rangers 7-4 at Cochenour Arena.

Di Lullo started the proceedings for Red Lake by reaching the 20-goal mark 12:37 into the first period to put the home side in front.

Skating in his second league contest, Liam Stalwick notched his second tally in as many nights later in the frame to put the Miners up by a pair.

Minnesota cut into the deficit before the first was complete as Elia Thompson finished off the work Erik Engdahl and Kurt Reger with the latter picking up his first SIJHL point at 18:28.

The Iron Rangers then chased Red Lake affiliate netminder Cameron Ceci 83 seconds into the middle stanza as Thompson added another to knot the affair at 2-2.

With Vince Benedetto entering the contest for the Miners from there, they regained control by striking four times before the period was complete to gain the upper hand in the match-up.

Sean Gula started the outburst at 3:47 before they tacked on a trio of tallies in rapid succession late in the frame to up 6-2 on markers from Bryce Young, Di Lullo and Ethan Stuckless.

Cole Bohnet added one more for Red Lake, with a man advantage effort 12:22 into the third to extend the cushion.

Continuing to battle, the Iron Rangers struck twice in the late going to round out the scoring as Joshua Baker connected on a power play chance at 17:53 before Minnesota’s Thompson finished off his first SIJHL hat trick in the final 30 seconds to wrap things up offensively.

Erik Engdahl dished out three assists for Minnesota in the contest with Stratton Pickett, Spencer Milne, Morgan Venne and Keilan Toews all having two helpers apiece for the Miners.

Benedetto in relief stopped 24 of the 26 attempts he faced to record the win for the Miners while Ceci handled seven of nine in his first appearance of the season.

Synjen Amende and Nick Corneliusen both saw time in net for the Iron Rangers in defeat.

Photo credit: Patrick Boucha