The Moose Jaw Warriors gutted out a victory on Saturday night.
Jagger Firkus scored the overtime winner for the Warriors as they knocked off the Medicine Hat Tigers, 3-2, at the Moose Jaw Events Centre.
“It’s a big win,” Firkus said after the game. “Obviously going into this weekend, we thought they were two games that we could win and coming out with four points is great for us and more that we wanted.”
Connor Ungar made 34 saves to backstop the Warriors to the win, while Atley Calvert and Martin Rysavy scored in regulation.
The win gives the Warriors a sweep of their weekend two-game homestand and moves the team back in front of Saskatoon for third place in the Eastern Conference.
“Throughout the whole weekend, we weren’t executing the fundamentals, but it’s junior hockey and that stuff happens, but found a way to win and that’s the main thing,” Warriors assistant coach Scott King said.
After a back-and-forth opening period, Medicine Hat took the lead when Oasiz Wiesblatt broke in and scored late in the first.
The score stayed that way until late in the second when Calvert banged home his 28th of the season in front of the Tigers net to tie the game going into the third.
The Tigers retook the lead when Owen MacNeil scored early in the final frame, but the Warriors answered back late as Rysavy broke in and lifted home his fourth of the season, sending the game to overtime.
In the extra period, Denton Mateychuk was hauled down in the Tigers’ zone, sending Moose Jaw to the power play. They capitalized quickly on the man advantage with Firkus firing home his WHL-leading eighth game-winning goal just 40 seconds into overtime.
Firkus finished with a game-high eight shots as he had plenty of chances throughout the game.
“Even the linesman before overtime, he said, ‘Firks you’ve had enough chances, put one home,’ I kind of agreed with him, but at least chances are coming, if chances aren’t coming that’s when I’m worried,” Firkus said.
The Warriors’ special teams helped power them to the win, finishing 1-for-2 on the power play and 6-for-6 on the penalty kill.
“[The penalty kill] did a really good job of pressuring and not giving them much time on the flanks,” King said. “We were really aggressive up ice, I don’t know how many two-on-ones, we had a breakaway, so we were dangerous on the kill, so good job.”
The Warriors are back on the ice on Wednesday when they open a three-game Alberta road trip in Lethbridge. The trek takes them to Edmonton on Friday and Calgary on Sunday.