Contacts drop Mintos 3-2

Mintos forward Luke Nkwama (7) shoots on Contacts goalie Rayce Ramsay (29) in Oct. 2017 SMAAAHL action from P.A. -- Herald File Photo

After a back-and-forth game through 40 minutes of play, the Prince Albert Mintos couldn’t tie up their Thursday evening contest in the third period against the Saskatoon Contacts in provincial Midget AAA Hockey League action in Saskatoon.

The Contacts wound up edging the Mintos 3-2 in regulation time.

“Our bounces didn’t go in last night, and our powerplay probably could have used some work, too,” Mintos alternate captain and defenceman Alex Moar said on Friday of the game.

The P.A. club couldn’t convert on any of its seven powerplay opportunities, which included two separate Saskatoon penalties with less than 10 minutes to go in the game.

Tyson Janzen was penalized for a head contact minor at 10:54 in the third period; and Jack Michell was called for boarding at 16:17.

The teams finished the first period with the Contacts up 2-1 on the Mintos.

After Saskatoon took the lead, Parker Fofonoff scored at 15:29 of the period, assisted by Kishaun Gervais and Jaden Mayer.

The Contacts Davin Griffin made it 2-1 with just over two minutes left in the period.

Saskatoon then went up 3-1 while on the powerplay after Evan Bortis scored at 1:25 of the second period.

In his assessment of the game, Moar also said his team could have played a more disciplined match.

Saskatoon was on the powerplay for its third goal because of a double minor assessed to Hunter Schnell for head contact in the final two minutes of the first period.

After that Saskatoon powerplay goal, the game’s officials assessed the Mintos three more penalties in the span of 13 minutes.

P.A. did manage to cut the deficit to one after Schnell scored an even-strength goal at 10:42 of the second period, assisted by Brandon Von Hagen and Jaxon Tait.

But that was all the offence the Mintos could muster: The Contacts and goalie Rayce Ramsay held P.A. off the score sheet for the rest of the game.

Moar also mentioned his team’s shot count, that it could have been higher. “We didn’t have too many shots last night.”

Ramsay had 20 saves on 22 total shots for the win.

The Mintos were off from play on Friday.

They host the first-place Notre Dame Hounds Saturday at the Art Hauser Centre at 7 p.m.

The Hounds own the season-series between the two teams at three games to none.

They last played each other on Jan. 28 in Prince Albert. Notre Dame won the game 2-0.

“They have a really fast, quick game,” Moar said of the Hounds. “And they’re pretty physical, too.”

The Hounds hold down first spot in the 12-team provincial league, with a 36-1-0-2 record, which includes just one regulation time loss and two shootout losses.

“I’d say they’re probably the top team right now in our league from what I can see.”

The key factor that Moar said the Mintos will have to watch out for is the Hounds powerplay unit, which makes it all the more incumbent on the P.A. players to remain disciplined.

“It’s the systems they get on the powerplay; it’s pretty hard to stop,” he said.

The Mintos (29-8-2-1) are in third place in the provincial league. They’re six points back of the second-place Regina Pat Canadians (32-5-2-1).

Including their game this evening, the Mintos have four games remaining until the playoffs start later this month.

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