By Medicine Hat News on February 26, 2020.
There wasn’t a lot separating the South East Athletic Club Tigers from their Airdrie counterparts in the Alberta Major Bantam Hockey League season, so it should come as no surprise that their first playoff game needed more than 60 minutes to determine a winner.
The Tigers took Game 1 of the best-of-three opening round series 4-3 when Elias Eisenbarth’s overtime shot pinballed in past Xtreme goalie Zach Zahara.
The goal was credited to Grady Martin on the official scoresheet but Tigers coach Brayden Desjardins texted the News that it was in fact Eisenbarth who got the goal, with Martin and Josh Van Mulligen registering assists.
“Boys played hard,” wrote Desjardins. “Very strong start, had a little bit of a lapse at the beginning of the second. But they found a way to come together and regoup when we were down 3-1.”
Team captain Van Mulligen had the opening goal in the first but Cyaden Hartnell responded for Airdrie a few minutes later. Two second-period goals from Tyson Sandhu put the Xtreme up, but Deegan Kinniburgh got one of those back for SEAC before the end of the frame.
Ford Gilbert tied it 2:50 into the third on a power play, leading to Eisenbarth’s heroics 3:35 into overtime.
Beck Boiteau made 28 saves, the same as Zahara in the opposing crease.
South East has a chance to win the series on home ice Thursday, 7:15 p.m. at Hockey Hounds Recreation Centre. If a third game is needed it’ll be Friday back in Airdrie.