The Niverville Nighthawks played an excellent first 40 minutes on Saturday night at the CRRC, but they faltered late in the game to fall 5–4 in overtime to the Winkler Flyers. With the loss, the Nighthawks stay in fourth place in the MJHL’s East Division with a record of 20–14–1.
It was a tale of two games, as the Nighthawks were the top team over the first two periods, while Winkler was the better team for the third period and overtime.
Niverville led 2–1 after the first period, with goals coming from Michael Tanchak and Ty Kennett. In the second period, the Nighthawks added another pair of goals to go up 4–1. This second round of goals came from Michael Debrito and another from Ty Kennett.
Winkler turned it on in the third period, though, and tied the game with three unanswered goals to silence the Niverville crowd. The fans went home upset as Winkler scored the game-winning goal halfway into overtime while on a power play after a controversial penalty.
Keegan Gordon stopped 27 shots in the Nighthawks’ goal in the loss.
“They were a disciplined team in the third period, and we ran into penalty trouble which caused a shift in the momentum I think,” said Nighthawks forward Adam Vigfusson. “I thought the team performed well for the first 40 minutes for sure. We played hard, finished our checks, and went to the dirty areas. It resulted in the goals as well as the opportunities we had.”
Vigfusson notes that the Nighthawks might still be shaking off the rust from the Christmas break.
“Coming back from Christmas break has been great, as I missed the boys and the ice time for sure,” said Vigfusson. “So it’s good to get back to Niverville and get a chance to get the legs back under us.”
The Nighthawks are back in action on January 13 with a home game against the Winnipeg Blues. The puck drops at 7:00 p.m.
“I think that success starts in practice. If we work hard in practice, we will play well and hopefully win our next game.”