FORT FRANCES, Ont. – A Stone Stelzl tally with just 91 seconds remaining in regulation was the difference as the Superior International Junior Hockey League exhibition campaign came to a close Sunday at Ice for Kids Arena as the Fort Frances Lakers went on to edge the visiting Red Lake Miners 2-1.
Red Lake opened the scoring early in the contest with Ryan Howe finishing off a Ryan Patterson feed at 1:23 of the first period.
It stayed 1-0 Miners into the latter stages of the second stanza when Jake Barker buried the equalizer at 15:23 of the frame.
Then with overtime looming, it was Stelzl’s marker that pulled out the late home ice triumph for Fort Frances.
Shots of goal on the night favoured the Lakers 33-26 Alex Bujega picking up the win in net for the hosts while Kolter Pawlick suffered the narrow defeat for Red Lake.
Regular season play for the 2019-20 SIJHL campaign begins Friday on three fronts.
The Miners host the Dryden GM Ice Dogs at 7 p.m., Fort Frances entertains the Thief River Falls Norskies at 7:30 p.m. while the Wisconsin Lumberjacks makes their league debut as they welcome the defending SIJHL champion Thunder Bay North Stars in a 7:45 p.m. start at the Spooner Civic Center.
All SIJHL games are streamed live online at HockeyTV.com.