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Estevan Bears to miss playoffs after narrow loss to Regina

Jackson Miller named league's goalie of the month for January
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The Estevan U18 AAA Bears faced Regina on Sunday.

ESTEVAN - The Estevan Steelhaus U18 AAA Bears’ hopes of qualifying for the Saskatchewan Male AAA Hockey League (SMAAAHL) playoffs were dashed Sunday afternoon in a 4-3 loss to the Regina Pat Canadians at Affinity Place.

Estevan (14-22-7) has 35 points, which leaves them 10th in the Saskatchewan U18 AAA Hockey League standings. They have one game remaining and sit three points back of the Battlefords Stars (17-21-4, 38 points) who occupy the eighth and final playoff spot.

Cade Cole opened the scoring 2:17 into the first period to give the Bears the early advantage. Regina scored twice to take a one-goal lead, but then Marshall Light scored for Estevan in the final minute to tie the game.

The two teams traded goals in the second, with Ayden Lamarre scoring for Estevan late in the frame.

Regina notched the winner with less than six minutes to play in the third.

Jackson Miller stopped 26 of the 30 shots he faced for Estevan.

Former Bear Kelton Pyne picked up the win for Regina by stopping 26 of 29 shots.

Previously, the Bears lost 6-4 to the Yorkton Maulers on Thursday night.

After a scoreless first period, Yorkton outscored Estevan 3-2 in each of the next two periods.

Kole Keen, Cole, Light and Cutter Knight had the Estevan goals.

Kaden Perron (four goals against on 15 shots) and Miller (one goal allowed on 11 shots) shared the goaltending duties.

The Bears will close out the regular season Tuesday night when they visit Regina.


In other Bears news, the SMAAAHL announced on Thursday that Miller had been named the goalie of the month for January.

Miller appeared in five games, making four starts, in January, going 2-1-1 with a 3.96 goals against average and a .910 save percentage. He earned game stars in two games and averaged over 40 saves per game.

He started the new year strong with a season-high 48-save performance against the Battlefords Stars, picking up a 5-4 win in Radville as part of Hockey Day in Saskatchewan.


The Estevan Apex U18 AA Bruins will face the Weyburn Wings in a best of five in the first round of the playoffs in the Saskatchewan AA Hockey League’s U18 South Division.

Game 1 is Feb. 24 in Estevan at 7:30 p.m. Subsequent games are Feb. 26 in Weyburn, March 1 in Estevan at 8 p.m., March 3 in Weyburn and March 6 in Estevan at 5:15 p.m. The latter two games would be played only if necessary.

Estevan (28-5-2, 58 points) is second in the division, while Weyburn (20-14-1-1, 42 points) was seventh.

In league play, Estevan defeated the Notre Dame Hounds 5-1 on Feb. 15 in Wilcox. Carter Beck had two goals for Estevan, while Kaden Chrest, Mason Fichter and Colton Pushie had the other Estevan goals.

Ty Fehrenbach stopped six of the seven shots he faced.

Estevan was to play the Notre Dame Argos in the season finale Sunday, also in Wilcox, but that game had to be called off due to road conditions. It wasn’t immediately known if the game would be made up, as it wouldn’t change anything in the standings.

Fehrenbach tied for the league lead in wins with 16.


The Estevan Meter U13 AA Bruins are waiting to find out who they will play in the U13 division’s South Division semifinal.

Estevan (19-4-2, 40 points) finished second in the division during the regular season, which earned them a bye in the first round.

They finished the regular season with a 3-3 tie against the Swift Current Broncos – who finished first in the division – on Tuesday in Swift Current. Jayden Chernoff, Boston Tait and Nathan Gardiner scored for Estevan, who led 3-0 with 10 minutes to play in the third, only to have the Broncos storm back to tie.

Easton Pushie stopped 34 of the 37 shots he faced.

Gardiner was the top scorer in the division, and fifth overall in the league, with 45 goals and 33 assists for 78 points in 25 games.