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Bantam Mavericks win Game 1 of South final in double overtime

Kohl scores game winner at 6:40 mark of second OT, Moose Jaw takes 2-1 win over Parkland Fire

The Moose Jaw Mavericks knew things were going to get tougher as they advanced through the Saskatchewan Female Hockey League Bantam division playoffs, but you aren’t going to get much more difficult that what they went through Saturday night at the Red Knight Arena.

Jasmine Kohl scored the game-winning goal at 6:40 of double overtime to give the Mavericks a 2-1 win over the Parkland Fire in Game 1 of their best-of-three South Division final.

The contest was as close as the score would indicate, with Ellie Gauvin opening scoring 1:35 into the third period before the Fire capped off a run of serious pressure with the game-tying goal with 5:01 to play.

Extra time even saw a penalty shot by Ember Dusomme, and while she didn’t score, Kohl finished things off three minutes later to send Moose Jaw into Game 2 with a chance to finish off the series.

Sydnee Christmann went the distance in goal and was outstanding in overtime, turning aside 42 shots to earn the win.

“It was entertaining for sure, especially for the fans,” said Mavericks head coach Stephane Gauvin. “It was a little stressful on the coaches, but it was a great game, that’s for sure.”

In theory, it would be easy for the Mavericks to be especially disappointed finding themselves in such a close contest at this time of year – they finished the regular season with a 22-0 record, after all, and carrying that level of play over into the postseason was the goal.

“That’s kind of the problem, you hope that somewhere down the line there will be a bit of a stinger for the team, but we never got one, so we’ve just kept rolling,” Gauvin said. “We’ll just have to keep it going the rest of the way.”

As their record would indicate, the Mavericks have had their share of impressive wins over the year, getting things down with a consistent level of play and general team-first attitude.

“The girls are a real team,” Gauvin explained. “They really enjoy being around each other and playing together and that’s so important. Good team cohesiveness can be really key.

“The thing is not only do they really get along, they’ve bought into the system and any little adjustments that the coaches make, they really seem to buy into it… it’s been a really fun year.”

A year they hope – and expect – still has a lot of hockey left in it.

“Tomorrow will be a real test, we’re going into their rink and we know it’s going a tough one, they’ll be ready and we’ll need to be ready too.