The Portage Terriers had a hard time finding the back of the net on Sunday night as they fell 5-2 to the Neepawa Titans.
Portage started the first period strong out shooting Neepawa 21-14 but Titan goalie Mason Lobreau shut the door. As the period was about to expire, Titan forward Carter McLeod opened the scoring with his 11th of the season. 1-0 Neepawa after 1.
Slade Stanick got the Terriers on the board early in the 2nd period. His linemate Mighton Johnson assisted the goal and picked up his first point as a Terrier. Neepawa regained their lead midway through the period scoring a pair of quick goals from Ty Schell and Tim Tychonick. A pair of late Terrier penalties were successfully killed off heading into the third period.
The third period started similarly to the second with Stanick attempting to bring his team back into the fight. He finished off a nice pass in the slot assisted by Owen Underhill and Evan Lachimea. Before the Terriers could even finish celebrating the Titans scored again to regain their two goal lead.
“It felt like our forecheck wasn’t there. We didn’t create enough chances in the offensive zone. We weren’t hard enough on pucks,” says Stanick. “We will need to work on getting pucks deep this week in practice. We turned pucks over too much tonight.”
Portage got into some penalty trouble and Cody Gudnason was able to capitalize on the power play to make 5-2. With time winding down Terrier forward Matthew Biros pulled the puck out of the corner and went upstairs on Lobreau. The goal would be too little too late as time ultimately ran out.
“We had a couple good shifts, but in this league the skill level is so equal, usually the team that works harder is going to come away with the win, and tonight it wasn’t us,” says assistant coach Robby Moar. “We’ve been playing good lately, but it felt like the effort level wasn’t where it needs to be tonight.”
The Terriers had won two games in a row coming into Sunday night, but with the loss are still looking for their first three game winning streak of the season. They’ve won two in a row six separate times this year.
Jayden Catellier played well in net for the Terriers but was the victim of a couple of strange bounces. Neepawa outshot the Terriers 45-41. Portage was 4/5 on the penalty kill but 0/5 on the power play.
The Terriers are back on the ice Saturday, Dec. 2, against the Waywayseecappo Wolverines.