The Niverville Nighthawks earned their biggest win of the season, defeating the first-place Steinbach Pistons 2–1 in overtime on Wednesday night on the road. With the win, the Nighthawks stay in fourth place in the MJHL’s East Division with a record of 18–11–1.
It was a low-scoring and tight hockey game as the teams battled away for more than 60 minutes.
After the scoreless first period, Carter Spirig got Niverville on the board early in the second with his sixth goal of the season. Steinbach tied the game before the second period ended to make it 1–1.
Neither Niverville nor Steinbach could break the deadlock in the third period, forcing the teams into overtime to solve this one.
A Nighthawks power play in overtime did the trick. Colin Whaley scored the game-winning goal to give his club the 2–1 victory.
“Tonight was a huge win for our team, and I think it helps us huge going forward with team confidence,” said Nighthawks defenceman Ethan Kelly. “We pulled it out by just sticking to our game plan the whole game, even when it seemed that the ice was one-sided in Steinbach’s favour at the beginning. But we never gave up and knew they would crack before we did.”
Raiden LeGall put up his finest performance of the season. He stopped 47 shots in goal.
“I feel like it all started in practice this week,” said LeGall. “Instead of taking the day off Monday after a back-to-back, we were on the ice. The guys were really giving it their all the last few days in practice as well, which really helped us. I felt like this was one of my stronger performances of the year. But also, as a team, we really pulled together as a group and got it done.”
“That was one of the best goaltending performances I’ve seen out of Raiden tonight, and that helps us a lot knowing that you have a goalie who is rolling,” added Kelly. “The only goal that Steinbach scored was when he wasn’t in the net!”
The Nighthawks are back in action on Friday night with a home game against the Winkler Flyers. The puck drops at 7:00 p.m.