MOOSOMIN - The 2023 Big Six Hockey League final will be a battle of Highway 8 rivals.
The Moosomin Rangers defeated the Bienfait Coalers 7-2 Wednesday night in Moosomin in the fifth and deciding game of their best-of-five semifinal series.
(Box score for the game was not immediately available).
Moosomin will now play the Redvers Rockets in the final round. The Rockets defeated the Yellow Grass Wheat Kings in their semifinal matchup.
Moosomin is about 40 minutes north of Redvers on Highway 8.
Dates for the final have not been announced.
The Rockets were the top-ranked team in the regular season at 19-1. They have not lost in Big Six action since their first game of the regular season in November. The Rangers, meanwhile, had the third-best record at 16-4.
Each team has won one Big Six title. Redvers' championship came in 2018. The Rockets have been a powerhouse in recent years though, including last season when they lost the final to the Carnduff Red Devils.
Moosomin's title came in 2004. The Rangers largely played in the Triangle League, and rejoined the Big Six for the 2021-22 season.
Bienfait had won its previous four games when facing elimination in this year’s playoffs. The Coalers won two straight over the Carnduff Red Devils with their season on the line in the quarter-finals, and also beat Moosomin twice in must-win games.
Meanwhile, the dates have been set for provincial finals involving Big Six teams.
The Carlyle Cougars will play the Wadena Wildcats in the best-of-three senior B level. Game 1 will be played March 11 in Carlyle, starting at 8 p.m. Game 2 will be March 18 in Wadena, and Game 3, if necessary, would be the following day, also in Wadena.
Also, the Carnduff Red Devils will play the Kyle Elks for the provincial senior D championship. The series with the Elks will begin March 11 in Carnduff at 7 p.m. Game 2 will be March 18 in Kyle and Game 3, if necessary, would be the following day in Kyle.
Redvers trails Kenaston Blizzards 1-0 in their best-of-three senior C south final. Game 2 will be March 12 in Kenaston and Game 3, if necessary, would be the next day, also in Kenaston.