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Estevan Bruins drop high-scoring game in Melfort

Aidyn Hutchinson had four goals and two assists for Melfort.
Cade Kennedy (23) and the Estevan Bruins faced Melfort on Wednesday. File photo

MELFORT - Early goals and an unproductive power play contributed to the Estevan Bruins' undoing in a 7-4 loss to the Melfort Mustangs on Wednesday night.

Clay Sleeva on the Mustangs' first shot 33 seconds into the game to give Melfort a 1-0 lead. Bruins' head coach and general manager Jason Tatarnic promptly pulled starting goaltender Jackson Miller and inserted back-up Wyatt Bouvier, an affiliated player who spent this season with the Yorkton Maulers of the Saskatchewan U18 AAA Hockey League.

Cade Kennedy tied the game for the Bruins less than six minutes later.

The teams traded goals in the second. Aidyn Hutchinson scored 50 seconds into the middle frame, but Kennedy tied the game at the 5:24 mark. Hutchinson put the Mustangs back in front, but Ilia Chmelevski scored for the Bruins with eight minutes to go.

Melfort's Nolan Patterson scored 60 seconds into the third period, but Raine Hodge responded 40 seconds later for the Bruins. The Mustangs then took over, with Hutchinson scoring twice and Austin Shepherd rounding out the scoring with his first goal in the SJHL.

Hutchinson had four goals and two assists for Melfort, and Sleeva had a goal and four helpers.

Bouvier finished with 16 saves on the night for Estevan and James Venne made 24 saves for Melfort.

The Bruins were one-for-eight on the power play and had several consecutive man advantages in the second period.

Estevan will visit the league-leading Flin Flon Bombers on Friday and Saturday night.