The Pistons were on a high coming off a fantastic performance against Portage on Wednesday night, and that carried over into Friday’s dominance of the Swan Valley Stampeders. Steinbach started quick, and finished with a flurry of goals to eventually win 8-2.
Mack Graham started the scoring with his 19th of the year, just past the five minute mark in the first period. Pistons newcomer Wyatt Hinson got his first MJHL point on his debut setting up Mack’s wrist shot.
Hinson was named the game’s third star in his first game after coming to Steinbach. He said that it’s the best feeling, having a great performance, getting the win and feeling so welcome in the locker room and by the fans.
Captain Jordan Bochinski scored the evening’s second goal on the powerplay. It came only three minutes after the first extending the Pistons lead to two. He had this to say about the goal. “The powerplay was struggling for a bit, so we had to change it up a bit. Playing with a couple skilled guys, gotta give all the credit to them, they set me up for a couple tonight.”
Swan Valley responded, by putting two of their own past Roman Bengert in the first. This brought the game back even, and set up for an important second and third period.
The Pistons would pull away in the second period scoring three times. Braden Purtill scored his first goal as a Piston after being out for a while with injuries. Darby Gula scored Steinbach’s 4th goal of the night after Plett made a precise pass across the zone to the pinching defenseman, who found the top corner over the shoulder of Swan Valley’s starter Connor Slipp.
Bochinski would convert on the Piston’s second power play opportunity of the evening making it 5-2. The captain had two powerplay goals on the night both set up by great zone control and quick passing.
Into the third period, the Pistons had the game in hand but didn’t let up even though they had a sizable lead. Bradley Schoonbaert scored his 16th of the season to make it 6-2 at 1:23 in the 3rd.
Drew Anderson finally got his reward for his hard work by putting the puck into the wide-open net after Vaughn Dupre and Wyatt Hinson both had chances saved by Slipp. The rebound fell to Anderson and he increased the lead to five with just under thirteen minutes remaining.
Tyler Anderson would wrap up his four point night with the Piston’s eighth and final goal of the evening completing the rout. Anderson stated in his post game interview that “We played the same way against Portage as we did against Swan Valley. We want this mentality to be against every single team in the league and to keep the momentum rolling.”
The way that the Pistons have played over the past two now must be carried over to the rest of the season. Anderson believes the key is to play this way every night.
In the dying minutes of the game Pistons forward Drew Anderson was hit in open ice without the puck up high by Swan Valley’s Carter McMurdo. Vaughn Dupre jumped in to protect his teammate and tied up with McMurdo after the whistle. Both players received Misconduct penalties but the Stampeders got the extra penalties in the altercation, including an Interference and a Roughing minor to McMurdo.
The game would end with the Pistons on the powerplay. The only time in the evening that they did not convert on their man advantage. The special teams play was greatly improved going 4-4 on the penalty kill and 2-5 on the power play.
The Pistons head to Neepawa to play the Native’s on Saturday night. They then head to Winkler to play the Flyers on Wednesday the 7th and are back home at the T.G. Smith Centre on Friday to face the Selkirk Steelers.
Three Stars of the Game
1st: Tyler Anderson (Steinbach) 1 Goal 3 Assists
2nd: Jordan Bochinski (Steinbach) 2 Goals 1 Assist
3rd: Wyatt Hinson (Steinbach) 2 Assists on his Pistons debut