SIJHL Showcase concludes with Ellingson’s heroics for Iron Rangers

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SIJHL Showcase 2016

SIJHL Showcase 2016HOYT LAKES, Minn. –  Jake Ellingson’s third goal of the game, 36 seconds into overtime, was the decider as the Minnesota Iron Rangers defeated the Dryden GM Ice Dogs 5-4 Thursday evening in the finale of the Superior International Junior Hockey League Showcase at Hoyt Lakes Arena.

Dryden opened the night’s scoring just past the four-minute mark of the contest when Nic Noseworthy made a quick deke and then stuffed one in short side on Minnesota starter Anthony Pupplo.

The GM Ice Dogs then went up up by a pair during a man advantage opportunity at 6:01 as Joe Carney’s wrister from the right point beat Pupplo high over the glove.

The Iron Rangers got one back from the frame was complete as Dan Sarnecki took a cross-ice pass and wired one top shelf over a sprawled Taylor Unruh in the Dryden net.

Minnesota drew level in the second courtesy of a Noah Bennett blast from the left point that bounced out the other side to Ellingson who banged it in from close range at 5:01.

The Iron Rangers then took their first lead of the night, via the power play, at 18:39 of the session as Ellingson jammed in his second of stanza following a goal-mouth scramble.

In the third, Dryden tied things up with an extra man as Kyle Pouncy knotted the affair with 12:44 remaining as his attempt bounced out of the glove of Pupplo and in.

It continued back and forth with Minnesota regaining the lead on a Gus Karkinen power play effort at 12:46.

Then with time running out in regulation, Dryden forced OT with 41 seconds left as Ben Smaha made it 4-4 with Unruh out in favour of an extra attacker.

Starting OT with a man advantage, Ellington won it with the teams playing four skaters to three as he fired home the game-winner from inside the high slot to give his side the extra point on the night.

Pupplo picked up the win making 32 saves while Unruh faced 22 attempts in defeat for Dryden.

Gongshow Gear player of the game honours were earned by Ellingson, who also had an assist, while Smaha picked up the nod for the GM Ice Dogs.

SIJHL action resumes Wednesday with Dryden visiting Ear Falls Arean to take on the English River Miners at 7 p.m.

Every SIJHL game is available online, on a pay-per-view basis, at FASTHockey.com.

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