It doesn't matter who plays in net for the Flin Flon Bombers - they'll still win inside the Whitney Forum. Matt Sankner made his season debut in maroon and white and was able to lead the Bombers to a 4-2 victory over Kindersley Oct. 5. He became the third Bomber goalie to record a victory this season.
Sankner, who spent time with the Fargo Force of the USHL last season, was brought in as Flin Flon continues its search to replace season starter Jacob Delorme, who is still out injured. Jaden Little was able to get the win against Kindersley Friday.
The Bombers moved to 7-2 on the season, vaulting past Melfort and into first place in the SJHL's Sherwood Division.
Sankner got early help from the Bomber offense, which gave him a 2-0 at the end of the first period. Matt Flodell opened up the scoring, finishing off a nice play from the rest of his line. Brandon Cianflone started the forecheck, guiding the puck to Caleb Franklin who found Flodell all alone in front of the net. The forward easily tapped the puck past Kindersley goalie Zach Johnson for his second of the season. Bomber captain Mason Martin doubled Flin Flon's lead with under five minutes left in the frame, blasting a point shot past Johnson immediately after Alec Malo won a faceoff in the offensive zone. Martin has seven points this season, already half of the career best 14 he had in the entirety of the 2018/2019 season.
Despite the score, the Bombers didn't exit the first period unscathed, as Ryder Richmond had to be helped off the ice during intermission, heavily favouring his right leg. He would not return. The Bombers are already missing Delorme, Tristan Lemyre, and Jack Michell.
Kindersley was able to get on the board 20 seconds into the second period. Austin Nault beat Sankner on a shorthanded breakaway after Martin bobbled the puck at the point. Nault had a clean look, and made no mistake, deking to his backhand and cutting into the Flin Flon lead.
The Klippers flirted with tying the game in the second frame, hitting a post and generating chances. They directed 23 shots on net in the period, but Sankner was able to stand tall, sending the Bombers into the third period up 2-1.
Jaxon White provided what turned out to be a much needed insurance marker with just over five minutes to go in the third. He hammered home a point shot on Flin Flon's sixth powerplay of the night.
Kindersley would bite into the lead once more before the night was out, as Nault notched his second goal of the night in with Easton Haygarth sitting in the box and Johnson on the bench for a 6-on-4 advantage for the Klippers with three minutes left.
The Klippers threatened to tie the game, but Donavan Houle-Villeneuve put an end to any comeback. He scored into an empty net with a seeing-eye shot from his own zone for his league-leading tenth goal of the season.
Flin Flon will now travel for their first long road trip of the season. They'll play three games in three nights next week, facing Humboldt, Battlefords and Yorkton Oct. 10, 11 and 12. Flin Flon will play at the Whitney Forum next Oct. 18 and 19, hosting Melville for a doubleheader.