The Anchorage Wolverines defeated the Kenai River Brown Bears 7-5 on Friday in North American Hockey League action at Ben Boeke Ice Arena in Anchorage.
The same two teams play Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at the Soldotna Regional Sports Complex. The Bears play the Wolverines again Dec. 1 at the sports complex, then will not be home again until Jan. 19.
The Wolverines went up 4-1 in the game only to watch as the Bears came back to take a 5-4 lead. Anchorage then scored the final three goals of the game.
In the first period, Anchorage’s Cole Christian got started on a four-goal game by scoring the first two goals of the game.
Kenai River’s Nick Stevens, assisted by Andy Larson and Kotaro Tsutsumi, cut it to 2-1 with 50 seconds left in the first period.
“Even though we were down, I liked our game,” Kenai River head coach Taylor Shaw said of the first period. “We were all over them.
“We made a couple mental mistakes and they capitalized on both of them.”
In the second period, Trent Powell of Soldotna and Ameen Ghosheh had the Wolverines up 4-1 with 4:14 left in the period.
Kenai River had it 4-3 before the end of the period. Jackson Ebbott scored on the power play, on assists from Stevens and Dylan Contreras, and Hayden Walters scored short-handed, assisted by John Ross.
Kenai River kept rolling in the third period and led 5-4 with 14:34 left in the game. Larson scored with help from Tsutsumi and Stevens, and Stevens scored on Larson and Tsutsumi helpers.
Anchorage answered when Christian scored on the power play and Danny Bagnole scored for a 6-5 lead with 7:04 to play.
“We made another mental mistake on the penalty kill and gave up a goal, then gave up another goal in transition,” Shaw said. “We shot ourselves in the foot tonight more than they played over us.”
Christian capped his big night with an empty-netter.
Marks Slavinskis-Repe saved 26 for the Bears. For the Wolverines, Vaughn Makar had 22 saves on 27 shots and Liam Beerman saved all three shots he faced.