PALMER — Garrett Butcher capped the Palmer Hockey Showdown in a big way for the Homer Mariners.
Butcher netted the game-winner with 1 minute, 27 seconds left in regulation, and lifted Homer to a 6-5 win over Lathrop during the final morning of the three-day tournament hosted by Palmer High at the MTA Events Center.
Robby Larson also scored twice to help prevent Homer from leaving Palmer without a win in the tourney. Mychaela Pitta, Lee Lowe and Dimitry Kuzmin also scored.
Trenton Spears led Lathrop with a hat trick.
Homer finished 1-2-0 in the tourney. Lathrop was 0-3-0.
Homer and Lathrop were 90 seconds away from joining the other six teams in the field with at least one tie in the tournament. Dimond, Wasilla, South, East, Colony and host Palmer each finished with at least one tie during the three-day tournament, which did not feature overtime per tourney rules. Dimond and Wasilla finished with two ties each in the tourney.
South won the tournament title with a 2-0-1 record.
East 6, Homer 1
A night after falling to South 15-2, Homer suffered another loss to an Anchorage squad. East skated past the Mariners 6-1 Friday on the second day of the Palmer Hockey Showdown at the MTA Events Center in Palmer.
Homer’s Dimitry Kuzmin spoiled East’s shutout bid, scoring with 12 seconds left in regulation.
Nicholas Eddens notched the hat trick to lead East, which outshot Homer 30-20.