Flyers dethrone Kings in first of two in Winkler

Ryan Sawatzky photo.

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Matt Friesen

The Winkler Flyers snapped a mini four game losing streak with a nice 5-2 win over the visiting Dauphin Kings on Friday night. Ian Tookenay and Griffin Leonard had a combined seven points as the Flyers reached the official halfway mark of the regular season.

Having played just two games so far in the month of December, the Flyers welcomed the Dauphin Kings to the Winkler Rec Complex for their fourth of six meetings on the year. The three previous three contests had all been tight, physical affairs with all three games being decided in overtime.

After allowing the first goal of the game just before the five minute mark of the first, the rest of the opening period belonged to the Flyers. Down 1-0, Winkler went on the power-play and pulled even on a goal by former King Ian Tookeny just over seven minutes into the first. Defense partners Trent Sambrook and Drake Burgin picked up the assists on Tookenay’s sixth of the year.

The Flyers special teams magic continued later in the period when Griffin Leonard pushed the puck forward on an offensive zone faceoff and Jackson Arpin scored his second of the year short-handed to move Winkler in front 2-1. Then with just 34 seconds left in the opening frame, Ian Tookenay broke up a Dauphin pass at the blueline and Griffin Leonard went in and scored to give Winkler a 3-1 lead.

After a scoreless second period, the Kings cut Winkler’s lead to 3-2 just over six minutes into the third. The Kings had the Flyers on their heals throughout much of the third period, but Dorrin Luding and the Flyers would hold the fort the rest of the way.

With 9:58 left in regulation, assistant captain Griffin Leonard carried the puck in from the Kings’ blueline and wired in his second of the night to restore the Flyers’ two goal advantage. Ian Tookenay and Garrett Szeremley assisted on Leonard’s fifth goal in his last four games.

With the Dauphin net empty in the final minutes of the game, Tookenay put the final nail in his former team’s coffin when he scored his second goal of the night to make the final 5-2 for the Orange and Black. It was Tookenay’s seventh goal of the season and fourth point of the night and it helped secure the Flyers 18th win of the season.

Dorrin Luding was solid between the pipes for Winkler as he stopped 32 of the 34 shots that came his way. The Kings outshot the Flyers 34-29 overall. Winkler went 1-for-2 on the power-play and a perfect 4-for-4 on the penalty-kill.

The Flyers (18-8-4) will host the Kings again tonight. Puck drop at the Winkler Rec Complex is 7:30 p.m. with the live video stream available on www.hockeytv.com. Saturday’s game is Winkler Coop and Grandeur Housing 40th Anniversary Night where the Flyers will wear their commemorative 40th Anniversary jerseys.

You can get your tickets in advance at the Winkler Coop Gas Bar, Petro-Canada Gas Bar or at the door prior to the game.

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