The Steinbach Pistons went into the game against the Winnipeg Freeze on a mission and it showed as they controlled almost the entire game leading to a 6-1 win on Saturday night.
Right from the opening puck drop, it was clear the Pistons were committed to their game plan. They brought wave after wave of attack into the Freeze zone and peppered the goalie with all kinds of shots.
Despite all the pressure and chances, it was the Freeze that opened the scoring after they narrowly avoided going offside, they managed to fire a puck through a screen and make it a 1-0 game.
After the goal, the Pistons remained determined and didn't stray from the game plan, putting more and more pressure on the Freeze defenders and netminder.
Eventually, all the hard work paid off.
On the third power play of the period, it was Neo Kiemeney who took a pass while standing on the right side, inside the circle, he hesitated, picked his spot, and fired home a beauty for his first of the season. The 1-1 goal was assisted by Ian Amsbaugh and Langley Kruggel.
Steinbach outshot Winnipeg 25-4 in the first period.
At the end of the first period, Hugo Larkin took a shot to the face that riled up the rugged defenseman who dropped his gloves but couldn't find a willing dance partner. Larkin was given a 2-minute instigator penalty and a 5-minute major for fighting which also meant he was done for the night with a game misconduct.
The penalty kill started the second period needing to kill off a 5-minute major and that's exactly what they did, in spectacular fashion. The PK units didn't allow a single shot on goal throughout the whole major penalty kill.
The score stayed 1-1. The rest of the second period belonged to the Piston's offense.
Dawson Milliken in his second game back from injury gave Steinbach the lead as the 20-year-old captain took a lovely pass from Davis Fry and fired a perfect shot far-side off the post and in for his second goal of the year. Ethan Johnson picked up the secondary assist.
Less than a minute later, Leo Chambers converted on a Pistons three-on-one and tapped home his 8th of the season. Amsbaugh picked up his second assist of the night while Noah Szabo also picked up a helper.
The lead would grow on another power play. This time it was a sensational shot-pass from Fry as he aimed for the stick of Davin Griffin who fought his way into the slot, used his body to protect his ice, and left his stick as a target. Griffen's deflection was his 4th goal of the season. Warren Clark notched an assist along with Fry, who was not done by a long shot.
After two periods, Steinbach was in the driver's seat up 4-1. Again, it was Steinbach leading heavily in the shot department finishing the frame with an 18-3 shot advantage in the period and 43-7 overall.
In the first minutes of the third, Fry would cash in to extend the lead to 5-1 as the dynamic 19-year-old forward notched his 10th of the campaign from Milliken and Amsbaugh, who capped off a tidy three-point night.
Milliken would finish off the scoring for Steinbach as the captain tucked home his second of the game while on a man-advantage off a perfectly sneaky pass from Ty Paisley, who spun around before dishing a backhand pass to the wide-open Milliken who made it a 6-1 game. Fry finished off his strong 4-point night with the secondary assist.
The Freeze would score in the later stages of the period to make it 6-2 but that's as close as they would get.
Steinbach snapped a two-game losing streak and improved their record to 16-4.
The league's best power-play got a much-needed boost finishing 3 for 7 while the MJHL's top penalty kill was a perfect 3-3.
Cole Plowman battled long stretches of in-activity but was dialed in when he needed to be, stopping 14 of 16 shots for his 9th win of the year.
Steinbach as a team will be off until Friday when they travel to Swan Valley to take on the Stampeders then follow that up the next night with a game in OCN against the top team in the West Division.
A large number of Pistons players will be making their way to Portage earlier in the week as the Top Prospects Showcase is happening at Stride Place Tuesday and Wednesday. Details about that event including rosters, schedules, and tickets can be found at MJHLHockey.ca.