Giants Top Blazers 3-2 in a Shootout
Langley, B.C. - The Vancouver Giants picked up a couple of big points on Saturday night, slipping past the Kamloops Blazers 3-2 in a shootout.
Just like on Friday, goaltending was a storyline for the Giants again on Saturday, as Brett Mirwald was the best player on either side, finishing with 41 saves on 43 shots for his fifth win of the season.
With the victory, the Giants improve to 6-8-1 this season.
Scoring for the Giants in regulation was Connor Dale (2nd) and Jaden Lipinski (3rd). Ty Halaburda provided the shootout winner, as he was the only player on both teams to score in the shootout.
Scoring for Kamloops was Shea Van Olm (4th) and Fraser Minten (1st).
The Blazers were the better team in the opening 20 minutes, outshooting the Giants 15-6, however, it was Vancouver who came away with a lead.
Connor Dale provided the only goal of the period when he came down the right wing on a 2-on-2 with Jaden Lipinski and fired a wrist shot past the blocker side of Dylan Ernst.
In the second, Kamloops kept up the pressure and tied the game at the 11:30 mark, after Shea Van Olm got free in the slot and scored his fourth of the season.
The Giants came out with renewed energy in the third period, and were rewarded for their efforts at the 7:01 mark, after Dale dropped a pass to Lipinski in front of the net right off an offensive zone face-off. Lipinski easily tapped it in for his third goal in the last eight games.
While Vancouver out-shot Kamloops 18-5 in the third period, the Giants were unable to close out the game in regulation. With Ernst pulled for Kamloops and under a minute left, Fraser Minten started a rush on his own and got past two defenders, before getting a lucky bounce as the puck deflected off a Giants defender in front and went in to tie the game 2-2.
With just two seconds left in regulation, the Giants took a too many men penalty, but they were able to kill it off in overtime.
Neither side scored during the remainder of the extra frame, meaning the game required a shootout.
After Adam Titlbach and Tyler Thorpe missed for Vancouver, Ty Halaburda scored to give them a 1-0 lead with one Kamloops shooter remaining.
Max Sullivan couldn't tuck home his attempt for the visitors, and the result was a Giants victory, their sixth of the season.
CLICK FOR ONLINE RECAP WITH GOAL CLIPS
SOG: VAN - 6/11/18/1 = 36 | KAM - 15/19/5/4 = 43
PP: VAN - 0/3 | KAM - 0/7
Face-Offs: VAN - 34 | KAM - 44
1st: VAN - Brett Mirwald - 41 Saves on 43 Shots, 3-for-3 in the SO
2nd: KAM - Fraser Minten - 1G, 1A, 10 SOG
3rd: VAN - Connor Dale - 1G, 1A, 5 SOG
Vancouver: Win - Brett Mirwald (41 saves / 43 shots)
Kamloops: Loss - Dylan Ernst (34 saves / 36 shots)
Brett Mirwald has recorded 40 or more saves three times this season. 41 saves is the most he's had in a win in his career.
Jaden Lipinski has five points in his last four games (2G-3A)
Connor Dale has five points in his last six games (1G-4A)
Ty Halaburda is 2-for-2 in shootouts this season
The Giants penalty kill went 7-for-7 on Saturday and is now 12-for-13 in the last three games
The Giants have two home games next week, starting with a Wednesday date with the Red Deer Rebels at 7 p.m. It'll be the first visit from Red Deer since 2020.
On Friday, they host the Portland Winterhawks at 7 p.m and on Saturday, they'll head to Everett to battle the Silvertips for the first time this season.
Images from this story
Vancouver Giants' Ty Halaburda in action
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