THIEF RIVER FALLS, Minn. – After tying it late to force overtime, the Thief River Falls Norskies got the game-winning goal courtesy of Jack Michels, 18 seconds into the extra session, to give them a thrilling 4-3 victory over the Red Lake Miners in a Superior International Junior Hockey League match-up Saturday at Ralph Engelstad Arena.
After a scoreless first frame, Red Lake potted a pair of markers in the second stanza to go up 2-0.
Their initial marker came off a double deflection as Caron Lux snapped a shot from the point that clipped off Morgan Venne and then the stick of Ethan Stuckless and flipped into the top right corner for a power play tally.
The Miners then later picked up an even strength effort from Sean Gula to go up by a pair.
In the third, Isaac Baron put the Norskies on the board at 5:09 before Michels tied it at 11:23.
The Miners regained the lead once more with Spencer Milne supplying his eighth of the season with under five minutes to play.
However, Thief River Falls came back again when Connor Kalthoff banged home the equalizer from close range with just 19 seconds to go.
Building on that momentum, Michels was the early OT hero as he was sent in all alone on a breakaway and made no mistake, snapping home the game-winner for the Norskies as his second of the evening gave the hosts the come from behind victory.
With the two tallies, and an earlier assist, Michels now has points in 10 straight games while producing six multi-point performances in a row for Thief River Falls.
The Norskies out shot Red Lake 36-30 with Joshua Seeley getting the win while Zach Willms suffered the setback where the Miners did earn a point with the extra time defeat.
Photo credit: Tim Benton