It was another collective effort for the second straight night as the Steinbach Pistons got goals from six different forwards in a 6-2 win over the Dauphin Kings Saturday night at the TG Smith Centre.
Playing their second home game of the year, the Pistons looked to even their record at 2-2 and they did just that by playing a full 60 minute game with contributions from everyone.
“Our execution on the forecheck was a big part of our success tonight,” forward Brendan Martin said after the game. “I think it’s just about getting pucks deep and keeping it simple.”
The Pistons got off to the start they wanted, as Tanner Mole buried his 4th goal of the season on the power play at the 5:49 mark of the opening frame to get Steinbach a 1-0 lead. Curtis Ireland picked up the assists on the play.
Brendan Westbrook continued his impressive play to start the year, as he found a loose puck amongst bodies in the slot and snapped one home for a 2-0 lead seven minutes into the contest.
“It’s hard to be a MJHL rookie and coming in to really competitive hockey,” Westbrook’s linemate Martin added. “Our leadership group just tries to keep them motivated and letting them know that they’re doing a good job every shift.”
The Kings quickly responded after the halfway mark of the period as goal from Brendan Arnold and Leeam Tivers 1:07 seconds apart made it a tied hockey game. Carter Sawchuk picked up the assist on the Arnold marker, and Tivers’ goal was unassisted on the power play.
But the Pistons put their foot on the gas the rest of the way, as Martin nabbed his first of the season on the power play with 32 seconds left in the first to give Steinbach a 3-2 lead after 20 minutes of play with Declan Graham and Westbrook picking up the helpers.
Matt Lenz, making his first Pistons start and first MJHL start, was solid in goal for Steinbach making 26 saves in his first win of the year.
In the second, Brady Tatro found a loose puck at the side of Kings goaltender Brody Palmer’s pad and jammed it in to double Steinbach’s lead to 4-2. Martin had the assist, giving him 3 points on the night and the Hanover Dental First Star of the game.
The Pistons completed the goal cycle, as Boedey Vaeth picked up a loose puck off of a faceoff and put it upstairs past Palmer to make it 5-2 at the 8:52 mark. Then it was Marcel Berube’s turn for his first MJHL goal, as he sniped one high shortside past Palmer to make it 6-2 with 1:08 to go. Ireland and Troy Williams had the helpers.
That was all the scoring in this contest, as Lenz and the Pistons shut the door on any hope for a Dauphin comeback with a scoreless third period.
Brendan Martin was asked how his team with all the new faces could keep the winning formula going heading into Winnipeg. “Just exactly what we’ve been doing,” he explained. “Keeping it simple, getting pucks deep, shooting the puck is a big one as well. If we do that, our team will have a lot of success this year.”
The Pistons went 2 for 4 on the PP, and the Kings were 1 for 7.
UP NEXT: The Pistons are on the road to take on the Winnipeg Blues at the BellMTS Iceplex this Tuesday night at 7:00 pm.