Mustangs and Hawks split series to open second half

Jason Kerr/Daily Herald The Melfort Mustangs forward Ryan Dugay fires a shot past Nipawin Hawks goaltender Jackson Fellner on Jan. 14 in Nipawin.

The Melfort Mustangs and Nipawin Hawks split their home-and-home series as the SJHL returned to action after the Christmas break.

Meanwhile the La Ronge Ice Wolves lost their first two games after the break including one loss to the division leading Flin Flon Bombers.

As of Jan. 9, the Ice Wolves are in second place in the Sherwood Division with a record of 21-12-2-1 with 45 points, two points behind the Bombers. The Melfort Mustangs are in third place with a record of 18-10-5-1 with 42 points and the Hawks are in fourth place with a record of 15-17-1-1 with 32 points.

The Mustangs earned a split with a 4-3 win over the Hawks in Nipawin on Saturday, Jan. 7.

Melfort led 2-0 after the first period and 3-2 after the second period. Dawson Leroux, Riley Ashe, Hayden Tuba and Ryan Duguay scored for Melfort. Alex Ochitwa, Cole Fox and Carson Dobson responded for Nipawin.

James Venne made 29 saves for Melfort; Jackson Fellner made 26 saves for Nipawin.

The Hawks opened the home-and-home with a 2-1 come from behind win in Melfort on Friday, Jan. 6.

The game was scoreless after the first period and the Mustangs led 1-0 after the second period. Leyton Holoien scored the Mustangs lone goal. Braxton Buckberger and Zander Stewart scored late goals in the third period for the Hawks.

Fellner made 32 saves for Nipawin; Joel Favreau made 24 saves for Melfort.

The Hawks were in La Ronge to play the Ice Wolves on Wednesday, Jan. 11, results were not available.

The Ice Wolves traveled to North Battleford and lost 4-3 to the North Stars on Wednesday, Jan. 4.

The North Stars led 2-0 after the first period and 3-0 after the second period. Walker Jerome had a pair of goals for La Ronge and Flynn Maxcy added the other Ice Wolves’ goal. Steven Kesserling, Jake Southgate, Evan Waldie and Keiton Klein responded for the North Stars.

Topher Chirico made 32 saves for La Ronge; Josh Kotai made 26 saves for the Battlefords.

La Ronge opened the second half of the season with a 4-3 loss to the Bombers in La Ronge on Tuesday, Jan. 3.

The game was tied 1-1 after the first period and La Ronge led 3-2 after the second period. Thomas Wright, Kale Taylor and Jacob Cossette scored for the Ice Wolves. Jacob Vockler, Cole Duperreault, Jaeden Mercier and Jeremi Tremblay responded for Flin Flon.

Dawson Smith made 46 saves for La Ronge; Harmon Laser-Hume made 28 saves for the Bombers.

The Mustangs have a home-and-home with the Humboldt Broncos this weekend. The teams play in Melfort on Friday, Jan. 13 and in Humboldt on Saturday, Jan. 14.

The Hawks play the Melville Millionaires in Nipawin on Friday, Jan. 13. The Millionaires are then in La Ronge on Saturday, Jan. 14.

The CJHL Trade Deadline is also on Tuesday, Jan. 10.