It was a back-and-forth battle between the Delta Ice Hawks and Grandview Steelers on Saturday afternoon at the fifth-annual PJHL Winter Classic, with the Steelers coming out on top 4-3 in overtime.
The Steelers got on the board first when Tomislav Zlomislic picked up a rebound to the right of Hawks goalie Jordy Engleson and slid it home on a sharp angle.
New Ice Hawk Kevin Parra-Vaughan made a great impression in his first game with the team, scoring his first goal in blue and gold to even things up. With 16 seconds left in the period, Kyle Robinson skated into the Steelers’ zone on the left wing with and found the trailing Parra-Vaughan, who scored high-glove side on Emmet Larson.
In the second, the Steelers again took the lead on a rebound. Thomas Von Schoenberg took a shot from the point and Ethan Strik was in the right place at the right time, picking up the rebound and sliding past Engleson’s outstretched leg.
Delta again came back to tie it, this time on the power play. Brice Kemp and Mitch Lavoie broke out 2-on-1, and Kemp flipped a pass to Lavoie in the slot over a defenseman’s stick, and Lavoie went top corner with just over a minute to go in the middle frame.
Parra-Vaughan struck again in the third period, this time giving the Hawks the lead. Engleson directed the puck off a shot to Parra-Vaughan, who then broke out 3-on-1 with Mark Epshtein and Truman Chiu. He kept the puck and shot off the far post and in to make it 3-2 Delta.
Grandview’s Lucas Cox picked up a loose puck in the Hawks’ zone and found Jarod Yau at the left point. Yau sent a seeing-eye shot on net that made it through traffic in front of Engleson and found the back of the net to tie the game at three.
Epshtein had a couple chances late in the game to give the Hawks the win, but was denied once by the Steelers’ defence and once by Larson, sending the game to overtime.
The Hawks ended the third period and started overtime down a man, as Brad Fortin had been assessed a five-minute major.
Engleson made some big saves in the early part of overtime, making 32 in the game, but while Grandview was on the power play, Michael Martino roofed a shot while standing on the goal line to win it in extra time.
Delta is back out on the ice Sunday morning at Minoru Arena, taking on the Langley Trappers at 10am.