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Grande Prairie, Alberta – The Grande Prairie Athletics (6-2-1) survived a late push from the Spirit River Rangers (1-6-1) and secured an 8-5 win in a rare Tuesday night game at the Coca Cola Centre.
The win moved the Athletics to 3-0 against the Rangers on the season and secured a spot alone in second place in the NPHL West division standings.
The Athletics offense continued to find ways to score and have managed 6 or more goals throughout their 5 game winning streak.
Spirit River would open the scoring in the first period and carried the lead for much of the opening twenty. Eventually Andrew Buote would get the A’s on the board to square it at 1 before Ryan Trudeau capitalized on the powerplay in the final few minutes of the first to make it 2-1.
In the second the A’s increased their lead by three following goals by forwards Brock Clement and Ryan Trudeau (2nd). Spirit River wouldn’t quit and managed to find the back of the net twice in the final five minutes of the second to once again make it a one goal game heading into the third.
Grande Prairie wouldn’t let them tie it up. With both teams trading goals throughout much of the third the Athletics sealed it late on a powerplay to make it 7 to 5 before Dustin Kersey added an empty netter and eliminated all hope of a Ranger comeback.
Dave Larson (5-1-1) earned the win allowing 5 goals on 29 shots.
The Grande Prairie Athletics return to the road Thursday night to start a pivotal home and home with the league leading Fort St. John Flyers (December 1st and December 8th in Grande Prairie).