The Swan Valley Stampeders survived a Steinbach Pistons comeback attempt to win 5-3 in Game #6 and have advanced to their first MJHL final in team history.
The Stampeders got out to a 4-1 lead in the first period and it was a lead that the Pistons fought hard to overcome, but couldn’t get themselves over the hurdle.
Bradly Goethals scored just 31 seconds into the game off of a Pistons turnover to give Swan a quick 1-0 lead. Matt Osadick made it 2-0 at the 7:04 mark of the first period.
The red-hot Riley Vautour answered for the Pistons with his fifth goal of the series to make it 2-1 Stampeders with 7:52 left in the first period. Nico Labossiere and Tristan Culleton had the helpers on Vautour’s goal. However Tucker Scantlebury connected twice in the final five minutes of the opening frame to put the Stampeders up 4-1 after 20 minutes of play.
The second and third periods belonged to the Pistons. Tanner Mole cut the lead in half as he tipped home a Doug Johnson point shot for a 4-2 game. Troy Williams picked up the bonus assist on Mole’s 5th goal of the playoffs.
In the third period, the Pistons got to within a goal after a power play expired. Kyle Bettens fired one past the glove of Stampeders goalie Merek Pipes to get Steinbach within a goal with 5:18 to go. Williams and Declan Graham had the apples on Bettens’ fourth goal of the playoffs.
But almost immediately after, the Pistons went to the box as Tristan Culleton was charged with a double minor penalty for high sticking. That put Steinbach behind the eight ball, but the PK units came up big to give the home side a chance.
But they couldn’t funnel the puck past Pipes, and as the dying seconds ticked away, Dane Hirst put the puck into a yawning cage as time expired to give Swan the 5-3 win and the series victory.
Matt Radomsky gave his team a chance to win by stopping everything in the second and third periods, but is tagged with the loss as he stopped 31 of 35 Swan shots.
The Stampeders finished 1 for 6 on the power play, while the Pistons were 0 for 2.
The Pistons organization would like to congratulate Tyson McConnell, Matt Radomsky (Holy Cross), Troy Williams, Easton Bennett, Brendan Martin, Boedey Vaeth, Riley Vautour, Nico Labossiere, and Doug Johnson (Albertus Magnus College) on their junior careers and wish them the best as they move on from the Pistons next season!
UP NEXT: The Pistons Awards Banquet Dinner will be held in the coming days. Stay tuned to Steinbachpistons.ca and all Pistons social media outlets for those upcoming details.