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Estevan Bears move closer to playoff birth with win in Prince Albert

Estevan scored four times in the third period on Sunday to pull away from Prince Albert.
The Estevan Bears faced the Prince Albert Mintos on the weekend. File photo.

ESTEVAN - The Estevan Great North U18 AAA Bears went 1-1 in their final northern road trip, splitting games with the Prince Albert Mintos.

Prince Albert defeated Estevan 6-3 on Saturday. The Mintos had leads of 2-1 after the first period and 4-1 in the second, but with Talen Wallis scoring Estevan's first goal. Evhan Allan scored in the second and Jase McNichol tallied in the third to bring Estevan to within one.

The Mintos pulled away with two more in the third.

Kaden Perron made 22 saves on the night. 

Estevan recovered with a 6-3 win on Sunday. After a scoreless first period, the Bears seized the lead with goals 32 seconds apart by Chase Holt and Roan Burgess. Prince Albert scored twice before the period was over to tie the game.

Thomas Ries, Wallis and McNichol scored three minutes apart in the opening six minutes of the third to put the Bears up by three. Prince Albert scored one late in the third, but Allan potted an empty-net goal to put the game away.

McNichol added two assists to finish with three points.

Perron stopped 31 shots for Estevan.

The Bears (17-16-5) have 39 points, which is the most in franchise history, surpassing the 35 they had in 2021-22. They are sixth in the Saskatchewan Male AAA Hockey League standings with six games to go.

Their magic number is five, meaning any combination of Bears' wins or regulation losses by the ninth-place Saskatoon Contacts, will put the Bears in the playoffs for the first time.