The Flin Flon Bombers saw their season come to an end, despite out -shooting and out chancing the Estevan Bruins on Thursday.
SJHL scoring champion Austin Daae scored his second of the night into the empty net with only 14 seconds left to give the Bruins the victory and the series in a hard fought 5 games.
Lynden Pastachak opened up the scoring at the 12:39 mark of the opening period. The Bombers would answer right away as they had all series with Paul Soubry tying the game 2 minutes later at 14:28.
That was the only puck to beat Matt Gibney, as he would close the door the rest of the way stopping 43 out of 44 Flin Flon shots, and was the difference maker all series long. Estevan was outshot in all 5 games, but found a way to win.
The game winner was scored by Austin Daae late in the second period, as the number one line came through with a goal at the 18:00 mark. Flin Flon came out and really pressed in the third, but did not get rewarded for all their hard work.
The Bombers have no reason what so ever to hang their heads, as they had one heck of a February, where they were able to win 8 out of their last 11 games just to make the playoffs. Not a lot of people held stock that they would even get into the playoffs, let alone outplay Estevan in the Wildcard Series.
The future looks bright with 18 out of a possible 20 able to return for next season. Flin Flon is also owed futures from Battleford, Yorkton, Dauphin and Drumheller.
Mike Reagan says his team will be in very good shape the next couple of seasons and look to be a solid contender for the start of next year.
Good luck to the graduating 20 year old's, Brock Hounsell and Brody Robinson, who were very good down the stretch and into the playoff's and will certainly be missed.
A big congratulations to the entire Bomber organization, who made some gutsy moves at the deadline and did everything but throw in the towel for the rest of the season. It did not look good for the Bombers who lost seven in a row after the January 10th deadline, but they stayed positive and never quit.
Talking to Mike and the players, they thought the defineing moment that turned around their season was their 2-0 victory in Battleford February the 11th. Not only was this a huge road win, but it also ended a 17 game unbeaten streak for the Stars. Flin Flon went on to win four out of their last seven games and that win really gave them a lot of confidence.
I think the thing that really impressed me was how the Bombers were getting contributions from everybody, and never ever seemed to be out of a game. This was one of the best comeback teams I have seen in recent memory and were the talk of the league the past several weeks.
Mike Reagan is excited about the future and needs to be given credit, for his boldness to make some tough deals at the deadline and how he was able to turn around the season, with one of the youngest groups in the entire league.
He rolled four lines and gave everybody a chance to contribute and it really paid off. This was a playoff run that Dean Allison and Eric Pedersen will never forget, as they were terrific offensively combineing for 13 points. Both Pedersen and Allison were brought in mid season on out of province trades. Tyson Empey also had a very good playoff run scoring 3 goals in 5 games.
All three players should be back next season. Good luck to the Estevan Bruins who move on to play the Battleford's in the SJHL Quarter Finals.