There were plenty of points in Monday morning's Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League showcase game where it looked like the Battlefords North Stars were out of it.
Down 1-0. Down 3-1. Down 5-2. Down 6-5.
Each time, they fought back.
And in the end, they picked up an 8-6 win over the Estevan Bruins thanks to scoring the three unanswered third period goals.
"[It was] not really how you planned to win it," North Stars assistant coach Boyd Wakelin said on the post-game show on CJNB/CJNS. "I think it kind of went completely against one of the keys I talked about, [which] was not getting into the run and gun. But props to the guys, being down 3-1 in the first, then 5-2. To show the character to come back in a game like that and win by a couple goals is pretty huge. It says a lot about the character we have in that dressing room."
On Saturday night, Estevan handed the North Stars their first loss of the season, with a 4-3 overtime win at the Civic Centre.
This time, the North Stars had the last laugh.
"It's two teams that have some firepower up front," Wakelin said, when asked why Monday's game was so back and forth. "You give any of the guys on either team some time and space in the O-zone and they're going to finish on those chances."
For the Bruins, Johnny Witzke, Issac Embree, Zach Goberis, and Kaelan Holt all had multi-point games.
For the North Stars, Layne Young was credited with a hat-trick and an assist, although it was linemate Dakota Huebner who actually put home his third goal. MacGregor Sinclair also had two goals and two assists, despite the fact that Blake Fennig was credited with Sinclair's game-winning-goal. Keith Anderson had a goal and an assist, while Brandon Armstrong and Troy Gerein each added their first goals of the season. Connor McIntosh had three assists.
The North Stars are now 4-0-1 to start the 2017-18 season.
"Definitely happy with the start to the season," Wakelin. "There's still some things we can clean up. I don't think we've played a full 60 minutes yet so that's something we need to work on.
"It's been a lot of fun so far. Today was just really good to see the guys stay positive on the bench when we were down and fight to get back in the game."
The North Stars now have over a week off, as they'll host the Humboldt Broncos next at home on Tuesday, Oct. 3.
Three Stars from Saturday:
3. Johnny Witzke - D - EST - 1G, 2A
2. Layne Young - LW - BAT - 2G, 3A
1. MacGregor Sinclair - C - BAT - 2G (GWG), 2A
1st. EST – 5:07 – McChesney (5) ASST: Goberis (8)
1st. BAT – 7:13 – Young (5) ASST: Loon-Stewardson (2), Urbanski (3)
1st. EST PPG – 12:30 – Witzke (1) ASST: Goberis (9), Embree (2)
1st. EST – 19:21 – Kheraj (1) ASST: Witzke (2), Embree (3)
1st. BAT – 19:43 – Gerein (1) ASST: McIntosh (1)
2nd. EST PPG – 3:40 – Holt (1) ASST: Embree (4), Ferguson (4)
2nd. EST – 4:26 – Goberis (4) ASST: Witzke (3)
2nd. BAT PPG – 10:10 – Sinclair (2) ASST: Young (8), Spagrud (1)
2nd. BAT – 12:34 – Young (6) ASST: None
2nd. BAT PPG – 16:37 – Hubener (4) ASST: Young (9), Spagrud (2)
2nd. EST PPG – 19:00 – Edmands (1) ASST: Holt (4), Fletcher (4)
3rd. BAT – 1:40 – Armstrong (1) ASST: Anderson (3), McIntosh (2)
3rd. BAT – 6:44 – Sinclair (3) ASST: Huebner (3), Young (10)
3rd. BAT – 7:14 – Anderson (2) ASST: McIntosh (3)
On Twitter: @NathanKanter11
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