Fort Macleod Mustangs exciting Ranchland Hockey League playoff run ended Sunday evening at Lomond.
The Mustangs pushed the Lakers to the limit in their best-of-seven semifinal series, but Lomond won it with a 5-2 victory in the deciding game.
“We gave it a good shot,” Mustangs coach Gordon Campbell said.
The Mustangs, who finished in third place in regular season standings, 14 points behind the Lakers, stunned everyone by winning the first game of the series in Lomond.
The Lakers won the second game in Fort Macleod last weekend to square the series at one game apiece.
On Friday night at Lomond, the Mustangs again stunned the home team with an 8-5 win.
Once again, the Lakers rallied to come into Fort Macleod on Saturday night to steal a 5-1 victory.
That set the scene for Sunday’s showdown at Lomond, which the Lakers won 5-2.
Lomond advances to the best-of-seven championship series against the Nanton Palominos, who finished first in regular season standings.
Mustangs 8 Lakers 5
Four third-period goals on Friday night powered the Mustangs to an 8-5 win and a 2-1 series lead.
Each team scored twice in the first period and were tied 4-4 after two periods.
In the third period three consecutive goals put the Mustangs up 7-4.
Lomond scored with 2:15 to play but an empty-netter clinched the 8-5 Fort Macleod win.
Willy David and Broere each had two goals for Fort Macleod and Chase Hofer had a goal and two assists.
Tyce Gallamore and Bilodeau each had a goal and an assist and Taylor Koyata also scored. Cody Hall and Jon Stewart each picked up an assist.
Hall made 35 saves in the Fort Macleod goal while Michael-Lee Teslak turned aside 41 shots in the Lomond net.
Mike White Quills and Manny Yellow Fly each scored twice for Lomond and Rustin Murray had a single.
Lakers 5 Mustangs 1
Still smarting from the loss at home the night before, it was a fired-up team of Lakers that showed up Saturday at Fort Macleod and District Sports Centre.
The Lakers got the only goal of the first period from Cam Hurt but took control with second-period markers by Nowal Pierson and Dustin Brosz.
White Quills and Hurt scored in the third period before Broere, assisted by Jadon Porterfield, got Fort Macleod’s only goal with 3:33 to play.
Lakers 5 Mustangs 2
After a long drive on icy roads in a winter storm Sunday afternoon, the Mustangs got a chilly reception at the Lomond Arena.
The Lakers took command early on first-period goals by Murray, Dave Foord and Maverick Blair.
An unassisted goal by Gallamore mid way through the second period got Fort Macleod back in it, but Lomond countered with Blair’s second of the night to restore their three-goal lead.
Fort Macleod got its second of the game with 3:54 left in the second, with Gallamore setting up Bilodeau for a goal.
Murray scored the only goal of the third period and Lomond skated to a 5-2 win to clinch the series.
Hall and Lee both made 31 saves.