An exceptional performance between the pipes by goaltender Jeremy Link combined with one of the strongest efforts of the year by the team in front of him, combined for a well deserved 2-1 overtime win for the Neepawa Natives.
The game, which was held on Wednesday, Jan. 27 at the Yellowhead Centre, featured a fast paced first period. Both teams had multiple chances to open up the scoring, but both Link and Oil Caps goalie Patrick Zubick kept thing even at 0-0. The shots were tied at 13 after 20 minutes.
Halfway thru the 2nd period Neepawa’s Reigan Buchanen opened up the scoring with his ninth goal of the year. Jordan Martin and Nolan Martens assisted on the play. Virden would press for the equalizer but could not solve Link, making it 1-0 after two periods of play.
In the 3rd, the Oil Capitals would be able to take advantage of a breakaway, as Dylan Thiessen went backhand to tie the game at 1-1. Both teams pressed for the game winner in regulation, but found themselves deadlocked and heading into OT.
In overtime, the Oil Capitals proved to be the aggressor outshooting Neepawa 5-0. Drake Bodie of Virden would then be called for goaltender interference, creating a power-play for the home side. The Natives quickly capitalized, scoring on their very first shot of the extra time. Kyle McDonald put home the game winner to secure Neepawa’s first win of 2016.