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Steinbach Edged by Portage

Courtesy of Steinbachonline.com

Another tough loss for the Steinbach Pistons as they fell to the Portage Terriers 5-4 Wednesday night.

The Pistons gave up the first two goals in the opening period but things could have been worse as Portage recorded 18 shots in the frame. It was James Shearer on the power play that would cut the lead in half. “He’s a workhorse for us.” said Dyck about the 18 year old Brandon, MB native. “He’s logged big minutes and was a catalyst on the power play.”

Special teams played a big role in the game tonight as the teams combined for 4 power play goals in the middle frame and when the smoke cleared, it was all tied up at 4 heading into the last 20 minutes of play. Despite being tied, Dyck knows there were aspects of his team’s play that needs to improve. “We have been guilty lately of selecting low percentage options instead of the simple one that would allow us to maintain possession. No question we have tried to be too cute at times.”

The Pistons had second period goals from Bradley Schoonbaert, Jordan Bochinski and Cole Smith.

Assists in the game were credited to Tyler Penner, Tyler Anderson, Dan Taillefer, Julien Koga, James Shearer and Mack Graham.

Portage would get the go ahead goal midway through the third and Steinbach was unable to come back. Despite surrendering 5 goals, Dyck doesn’t put the blame on goal tender Roman Bengert who stopped 28 of 33 shots. “Goaltending wasn’t our problem tonight. When you give up 5 (goals), you often have to look at your goalie, but Roman was not the issue. We have been giving up too many prime scoring opportunities and allowing 2nd and 3rd chances.”

Stienbach’s penalty kill had a rough night again surrendering 2 goals on 5 times short handed. The power play found the back of the net 3 times out of 5.

Steinbach has a day off on Thursday before getting back on the ice at home against the Winkler Flyers. It’s already the 4th meeting between the Flyers and the Pistons and a rivalry is heating up. Dyck knows what needs to be done. “Quite simply, we need everyone to buy in to a simpler game and raise our compete level.”