The Steinbach Pistons made a late third-period surge, but it was too late as the Portage Terriers went on to take the first of the home-in-home series 5-3 Saturday night at the PCU Centre.
The Terriers took a 4-0 lead 20 seconds into the third period, scoring two goals in the first and another in the second period. Brandon Stanley, Adam Wowryk, Brad Bowles and Chase Brakel all found the back of the net for Portage.
Despite getting four opportunities with the man advantage in the first two periods, the Pistons number one ranked power play couldn’t beat Terriers goaltender Josh Bykowski.
It wasn’t until 4:57 of the final frame when Bradley Schoonbaert scored the Pistons first goal of 2016. Luke Amsbaugh picked up the assist in his first game back on the ice since being out of the since November 21 due to injury.
Brad Bowles had regained Portage’s four-goal lead before Hayden Goderis and Tyler Penner tallied for Steinbach to close out the scoring. Penner’s goal came with just 51 seconds remaining in the game.
Steinbach’s Roman Bengert made 24 saves on 29 shots in the loss and Portage’s Bykowski steered away 21-of-24 for the win.
Steinbach holds a 1-2-1 record versus Portage with two more contests yet to be played against the Terriers yet this season. The Pistons will host the second game of the weekend home-in-home series 7:30 PM at the T.G. Smith Centre.