BY FRASER RODGERS
Prince George Cougars
The Kamloops Blazers pulled another rabbit out of their hat. Zane Franklin scored with 50-seconds left in overtime, as the Blazers came from behind to beat the Prince George Cougars 3-2 in overtime on Sunday afternoon.
Despite the overtime setback, Cougars’ goaltender Taylor Gauthier was fantastic in goal, stopping 35 of 38 shots and was named the game’s second star. Josh Masher and Matéj Toman scored second period goals, as the Cougars led 2-1 through 40-minutes.
Montana Onyebuchi and Martin Lang scored in regulation for the Blazers. Lang scoring the only goal in the third period to push the game beyond regulation. Dylan Ferguson turned aside 27 of 29 shots in the Blazers’ crease.
After a scoreless opening 20-minutes, Maser broke the scoreless tie 12-minutes into the second. Maser finished off a great setup by Ethan Browne, who spun a no-look pass over to Maser. The celebration was quickly muted, as the Blazers scored seconds later.
Onyebuchi tied the game on the next shift, as his point-shot banked in off a body in front of Gauthier. After a scoreless tie through 32-minutes, the two teams scored 26-seconds apart.
Toman restored the Cougars lead late in the middle frame, banging in a rebound at the top of the crease, after Mitch Kohner had his shot stopped. Toman made it 2-1 at 15:10.
Lang tied it in the third, sweeping in the puck just past Gauthier’s glove and just across the goal-line at 8:38.
Franklin’s overtime winner was third goal and ninth point against the Cougars this season. Sunday was just the Cougars’ second loss (12-0-1-1) when leading after 40-minutes. The Cougars are now a point back of the Blazers and Seattle Thunderbirds in the Western Conference Wildcard race.
Cougars [1-0] Josh Maser (18) from Ethan Browne and Jackson Leppard 12:01
Blazers [1-1] Montana Onyebuchi (4) from Martin Lang and Connor Zary 12:27
Cougars [2-1] Matéj Toman (5) from Mitch Kohner and Mike MacLean 15:10
Blazers [2-2] Martin Lang (10) from Jermaine Loewen and Connor Zary 8:38
Blazers [3-2] Zane Franklin (21) from Orrin Centazzo 4:11 GWG
*GWG= game-winning goal
Cougars- Taylor Gauthier (Loss) 35/38 64:10
Blazers- Dylan Ferguson (Win) 27/2964:10
UP NEXT:The Cougars (16-24-2-2) wrap up their six-game home stand on Tuesday against the Moose Jaw Warriors (24-11-6-2). Tickets available at the TicketsNorth by Treasure Cove box office, or online at www.ticketsnorth.ca.