Wednesday, May 5, 2010

LUKE’S THREE POINTS LEAD KINGS TO FIRST IN ROUND ROBIN

Press Release

DAUPHIN, Man. – Same teams, same building, same result for the Dauphin Kings.

Shane Luke’s second goal of the game with 2:56 to go was the game-winner as the Kings wrapped up first place in the round robin at the 2010 RBC Cup with a 3-2 win over the La Ronge Ice Wolves on Tuesday night.

Dauphin (3-0) won all three games at the Parkland Recreation Complex against the Ice Wolves just two weeks ago to win the ANAVET Cup, and the home-ice advantage continued for the Kings on Tuesday.

The Ice Wolves (1-2) got the early jump, as Kirk Moore’s shot went wide of the net, banked off the endboards, off the pad of Brett Willows – who was making his first start of the tournament – and in for a 1-0 La Ronge lead just 63 seconds after the opening face-off.

But Luke and Ryan Dreger helped set up Bryce Lamb for the tying goal just past the 16-mark of the opening period on a Dauphin power play, the only one of the Kings’ 18 shots to beat La Ronge goaltender Adam Bartko, who was also making his maiden RBC start.

Despite a combined 30 shots in the first period, the two teams headed to the dressing room at 1-1.

The offensive onslaught continued for the Kings in the second period; Dauphin outshot La Ronge 19-5 in the middle frame, but only Luke could beat Bartko, leaving the Kings with a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes, despite a 37-17 advantage on the shot clock.

The momentum shifted to the Ice Wolves to begin period No. 3, and the Saskatchewan champions pulled even at the 3:11 mark off the stick of Doug Lindensmith, who notched his team-leading third goal of the tournament.

La Ronge outshot the Kings 18-10 in the third period, but a late hooking penalty to Moore proved to be the Ice Wolves’ downfall, as Luke snuck into the slot to snap a shot past Bartko, scoring his tournament-leading fourth goal.

Assured of a semifinal spot thanks to Oakville’s 5-3 loss to Vernon earlier Tuesday, the Ice Wolves will conclude the round robin against Brockville on Thursday night (7 p.m. CT) in a game that could decide semifinal placement. The Kings wrap up their preliminary schedule Wednesday when they face winless Oakville (7 p.m. CT).
(Nathan also is a writer for Maineiacs Post to Post and the Maine Hockey Journal. He can be reached at fourniern@students.nescom.edu)

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