The Bradford Rattlers Jr. A squad is in the hunt for another Russell Cup championship.
The team has advanced to the GMHL North Division finals vs. Temiscaming, in a Best of 7 game series.
Games one and two were played in Temiscaming, Quebec – the first a 5-2 win for Bradford, the second a narrow 4-3 loss in overtime.
The Rattlers were back on home ice at the BWG Leisure Centre, for Game 3 of the series on March 11.
A revitalized Temiscaming squad hit the ice determined to win, and dominated from their first goal, halfway through the first period, a marker by Mark-Antoine Turcotte.
Temiscaming’s Reingold Shtemke added a second goal, less than a minute later, to give the Titans a 2-0 lead.
The Rattlers were able to narrow the gap, about 15 minutes into the frame, with a goal by #12 Denis Valguzov from Georgii Larshin (#55) and Linus Brofaldt (#26) – and two minutes later, Larshin knotted the score 2-2, with assists from Jack Varga (#10) and Brayden Morris (#22).
Then another Rattler penalty gave the Titans a one-man advantage, and Temiscaming’s Nicolas Tremblay restored the Titan’s one-goal lead, 3-2, with 1:05 remaining.
The second period saw more of the same. Bradford tied it at 3-all, with 12:09 on the clock – a goal by #91 Mike Dyck of Calgary, from Marek Martiška (#17) and Larshin – but a hard check from behind led to a five-minute penalty for Bradford’s Valguzov, and another power play opportunity for Temiscaming.
The Titans’ Yannick Ethier capitalized to score, then team-mate Mikhail Akatnov added a fifth goal at 5:18. And with 53 seconds left in the second period, Temiscaming increased their lead to 6-3, with a second goal by Turcotte.
The Rattlers went on the offensive in period 3. Bradford’s Matvey Trubachyov (#18) added a fourth goal at 12:26, unassisted, while Larshin made it 6-5 with a goal from Vojtech Pfeifer (#20) and Carter Wade (#15) two minutes later.
But with 2:36 remaining in regulation play, Temiscaming’s Yannick Ethier scored his second goal of the night to give the Titans a 7-5 lead, and the Rattlers just ran out of time.
Game 4 in the series goes tonight in Bradford, at 7:30 p.m. Come out and cheer on the Rattlers, as they continue their long-standing feud with Temiscaming.