Two tying goals in the third period were not enough for Bemidji boys hockey as Warroad scored with less than four minutes remaining to take a 4-3 win at the Bemidji Community Arena on Saturday afternoon.
Jackson Hill put together a solid first period to keep the Warriors off the scoreboard, including kicking up a redirected shot into the glove.
Bemidji got on the board when Colton Pickett followed up his own shot for his first goal of the season at 9:15 of the opening period.
Hill was brought back into action in the second period on a snatching glove save that kept the Lumberjacks ahead.
The game, ironically, started to shift on a Bemidji powerplay when the Lumberjacks were caught with too many skaters on the ice during a sloppy line change. Following a small stretch of 4-on-4, Warroad’s power play teed up Daimon Gardner to fire a wrister into the net.
Gardner and Warroad’s special teams struck again just 1:29 later. Jayson Shaugabay teed him up with a pass across the slot that led to a top-shelf goal over Hill.
A host of chances to tie the game went without goals for Bemidji in the second period, with Wyatt Mattfield in particular dueling with Warrior goaltender Hampton Slukynsky.
Mattfield bested the netminder to tie the game at two a mere 1:20 into the third period with a tight-angle shot that slipped past Slukynsky for his fifth goal in three games.
46 seconds was all the time needed for Warroad to go back into the lead. Murray Marvin-Cordes was credited with the goal on a deflection backward off the Bemidji defense that slid under Hill.
Yet again, Bemidji’s early-season penchant for finding comeback goals came through–and it only took 1:49 after the Warriors’ goal to answer. This time, senior Ben Kieson tallied his first varsity goal with a turnaround shot from the slot.
Pickett very nearly put Bemidji ahead again on a breakaway chance that was denied by Slukynsky minutes later.
The Warriors had the final say at 12:25 of the third period when Carson Pilgrim picked off a pass at center ice and slid a shot under Hill from the wing.
The Lumberjacks drop to 2-1-1 and will have a week off before traveling to play Sartell-St. Stephen and St. Michael-Albertville in a pair of Section 8AA games on Friday and Saturday.