Athletics Open Playoffs With Win

The Grande Prairie Athletcs faced a little adversity in their opening game of the best of seven West Division Semi-Finals last night but managed to score late to win game 1.

The first period proved to be the start the A’s were looking for. Grande Prairie outshot the Canucks 15 to 10 and found the scoreboard twice carrying much of the play throughout. Forward Adam Boytinck opened the scoring after receiving a nice pass from Blaine Bablitz dekeing out Canucks starting goaltender JB Agar. The A’s would squander a few more chances in the middle part of the period before finally solving Agar again at 4:38 as captain Kelly McLeod finished on a nice setup from forward Andrew Buote.

All the momentum of the first carried over into the first 5 minutes of the second period. Opening with a four minute powerplay Grande Prairie’s Shane Mudryk would strike in the final two minutes of the double minor to push the A’s lead to 3 to 0.

It seemed to spark the Canucks.

Eight minutes after the A’s added to their lead the Canucks would score the first of three straight. Coltor McLean made it 3 to 1 at 9:23 before the Canucks powerplay took charge scoring two more in the final 6 minutes of the second to tie the game at three.

The third period was full of close calls. The Canucks outshot the Athletics 19 to 11 in the final twenty as A’s goaltender Dave Larson kept the game tied at 3. Both teams came close as Grande Prairie would hit the post and Dawson Creeks Chris Stevens would miss a wide open net in what looked like a for sure 4 to 3 lead. The Canucks continued to mount pressure before Andrew Buote would give the A’s the lead for good banging home a loose puck following a scramble around the Dawson net.

The win gives Grande Prairie an early 1 to 0 lead in the series. Game 2 goes Thursday night in Dawson Creek.

Scoring Summary

First Period:

GP – 14:19 – #24 Adam Boytinck from #22 Blaine Bablitz and #23 Jake Goldsmith
GP – 4:38 – #9 Kelly McLeod from #19 Andrew Buote and #12 Shane Mudryk

Shots on Goal
Grande Prairie: 15
Dawson Creek: 10

Second Period:

GP – 17:43 – #12 Shane Mudryk from #9 Kelly McLeod and #5 Dustin Gould (PP)
DC – 9:23 – #78 Colter McLean from #44 Andrew Derton
DC – 5:44 – #74 Jeff Taylor from #44 Andrew Derton (PP)
DC – 1:31 – #36 Chris Stevens from #67 Ryan Walker and #74 Jeff Taylor (PP)

Shots on Goal
Grande Prairie: 14
Dawson Creek: 11

Third Period:

GP – 3:20 – #19 Andrew Buote from #9 Kelly McLeod

Shots on Goal
Grande Prairie: 11
Dawson Creek: 19

Total Shots on Goal:
Grande Prairie: 44
Dawson Creek: 40

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