Stampeders' Coach Dwayne Kirkup felt the first goal would be important Friday in Neepawa, and it was. The Neepawa Natives got it, and held the lead four different times, in a 4-3 win over the Stamps, preventing Swan Valley from jumping into a playoff spot for now.
Dylan Dock scored twice for Neepawa, while Landon Peel scored for Swan in his first game back with the Stampeders since being re-assigned by the Regina Pats, and also rang one off the post on an early first period powerplay when it was scoreless. Colin Baudry and Kyle Smart also scored.
Shots were 38-23 for Swan. Former Wayway Wolverine Jared Knott made 35 saves in his first start as a Native.
1) Shane Harrington, NEE (2a)
2) Jared Knott, NEE (35 saves)
3) Landon Peel, SV (1g)
The Stampeders now have a huge home and home with the Wayway Wolverines, who they trail by one point for a playoff spot... tonight (SAT) in Swan, tomorrow in Waywayseecappo (4:00 on GX94).
The Yorkton Terriers out-shot Melfort by a similar margin that Swan did to Neepawa (37-25), but also came up on the short end.
Former Swan Valley Stampeder Patrick Johnson stopped all 37 for his first Junior hockey shutout, as Melfort came into Yorkton and upset the 2nd place Terriers 3-0.
Ex-Melville Millionaire Godric Tham had a goal and two assists, so did both of his linemates, Brandon Sloan and Jarett Zentner, as that line had 9 points between them.
Melfort's in Melville tonight, while the Terriers are off to Weyburn tomorrow (SUN).