The Steinbach Pistons are in no hurry to relinquish their 2013 Turnbull Cup Championship. Although the Pistons went into Sunday night’s Addison Division final trailing the Winnipeg Blues 3-0, there was still some fight left in the defending champions.
Ryan Edevold scored the evential winning goal at 4:25 of the third period and Zach Rakochy made 37 saves as the Pistons knocked off the Blues 2-1 at MTS Iceplex to send the series back to Steinbach on Tuesday for Game 5. Now trailing, 3-1, the Pistons still have their backs against the wall, but they aren’t dead yet.
“We wanted to be playing hockey in April and we’ll be playing hockey in April,” said Pistons head coach and GM Paul Dyck. “We had a tough first-round series against Portage and we expected a tough series against the Blues. We still have a hungry group of guys. We have 11 guys who were with our championship team last year and they enjoyed the run we went on last year. I’m still excited about this team. We’re still playing.”
Sunday night in Winnipeg, the Pistons jumped out to a 1-0 lead as Tyler Penner scored from the talented Denis Bosc at 17:49 of the first period. But the Blues would not back down as Mack Heisinger, son of Winnipeg Jets assistant general manager Craig Heisinger scored at 1:30 of the second period on a power-play to even the score. Veteran Warren Callis drew the assist.
But Edevold scored from Bosc and team leader Justin Augert early in the third and then Rakochy turned the pressing Blues aside for the remainder of the game to give Steinbach its initial win in the series.
Rakochy was brilliant, facing seven shots in the first period and then 16 in the second and 15 more in the third as the Blues outshot Steinbach 38-32.
The winner of this series will face the Dauphin Kings for the Turnbull Cup. Regardless of what happens in the final, Dauphin will play in the Western Canada Cup as the host team, but if an Addison team can beat Dauphin in the final, it will mean two Manitoba teams will get a shot at the Western canada Cup in Dauphin from April 25-May 4.
Meanwhile, Game 5 in this series goes Tuesday night, April 1 at the T.G. Smith Centre in Steinbach.