New Westminster, BC – The New Westminster Salmonbellies threw everything they had at the Whitby Warriors on Sunday (August 25) night, but it wasn’t enough. The Warriors claimed the 2013 Minto Cup with a 10-8 win in overtime, in what was a spectacular end to the series.
The game was close from the very first face-off as the two teams were neck and neck in the opening period. The Warriors opened the scoring on the power play, which became a huge key to their success as the Warriors went 5 for 5 on the power play in the game. The Salmonbellies responded with two quick goals of their own after the opening goal but the Warriors tied it late with their second power play goal.
After a close second period the Warriors finally got some separation as they out scored the Salmonbellies 3-1 in the middle frame. With the Salmonbellies backs against the wall they had to put forth a solid third to have a chance and they did just that.
In less then three minutes into the final period the Salmonbellies scored three straight goals to take the lead 6-5. From there the teams traded goals until the third period buzzer. It was a third period to remember for the Salmonbellies players and their fans, who provided an extra spark for their team, on a night they were needed.
The overtime was set with the teams tied 8-8 and it was 10 minutes of non-sudden death play so one goal wouldn’t guarantee a win. The Warriors scored two quick goals to put the Salmonbellies on their heals as they led 10-8 with 5 minutes to go. The Salmonbellies had their chances but just couldn’t get a clean enough shot on net.
The Salmonbellies even caught Warriors goaltender Alexis Buque with an illegal stick to gain a last minute power play, but they couldn’t capitalize. When the final horn sounded the Warriors threw their sticks and gloves in the air with excitement as the celebrations began.
It was a difficult end for Salmonbellies who were oh so close to forcing a 5th and deciding game. The Salmonbellies gave their home crowd lots to cheer about throughout this tournament as they almost pulled off an upset over a Warriors team that many thought were unbeatable.
Jeremy Bosher took home the final MVP of the tournament for the Salmonbellies scoring 2 goals, an assist and he fired 15 shots on net. Ryan Keenan was named MVP for the Warriors scoring 1 goal and 3 assists. Dan Lintner was awarded the tournament MVP, as he led the entire Minto Cup tournament with 16 goals and 15 assists in just 7 games.