KAMLOOPS, BC — JR Avon scored the game-winning goal 10:54 into overtime and the Peterborough Petes defeated the Kamloops Blazers 5-4 on Thursday to earn a spot in the Memorial Cup semifinals.
Connor Lockhart, Brennan Osman, Samuel Mayer and Brian Zanetti competed for defending Ontario Hockey League champions Peterborough. Michael Simpson made 43 saves.
Logan Stankoven, Olin Zellweger, Harrison Braunick, and Logan Bayrus responded to welcome Kamloops. Dylan Ernst stopped 25 shots.
The Bates will take on the Western Hockey League champions, the Seattle Thunderbirds, in the semifinals on Friday for a chance to face the Quebec Remparts in the final on Sunday.
Major League Hockey League champions Quebec Remparts earned a spot in the final after opening the tournament with victories over Kamloops and Seattle.
Quebec later fell to Peterborough – who avoided elimination and forced a tiebreaker on Thursday with a win – 4-2 on Tuesday in the two teams’ final match.
Lockhart opened the scoring at 7:52 in the first period. Chase Lefebvre sent the puck through the backboards to Jax Dubois, who found Lockhart with a terrific pass to the hole and beat Ernst by five holes.
Stankoven equalized at 11:20 in the frame, sending the Sandman Center crowd into a frenzy. Connor Levis shot from the point and the rebound went to the Blazers captain, who scored his second goal of the tournament.
Zellweger gave Kamloops the lead with 12:45 in playing time. CHL Defenseman of the Year candidate kept the puck out of Bates’ territory, moving into the slot and past Simpson for first.
With 2:27 to go on first, Proneck piled on the Blazers. Peterborough’s Connor Smith tried to clear the backboard, but the puck ended up with Proneck on the point, sliding past a defender and hitting Simpson on the right shoulder with some space.
Pyrrhus gave Kamloops a 4-1 advantage with 4:23 down the middle. He fired a point shot that ricocheted off Simpson’s blocker, then hit him and into him.
After just over three minutes, Bates began turning the momentum in his favor.
Osman Bayros was stripped of the puck when the Blazers defenseman attempted to skate out of his area. Osman then turned around and his roof passed Ernest as he dropped to one knee.
Mayer made it a one-goal game on the power play with 2:23 left in the second. He caught a pass from Lockhart and timed it from the point.
Zanetti set up the match after just a minute. He caught a pass from Tucker Robertson as he looped into the net and beat Ernest by five holes.
Both teams struggled to capitalize on key scoring opportunities leading to a scoreless third period and extra time to decide the winner.
After a great effort from Zellweger just missed, Owen Beck took the ice for Peterborough and left it to Avon, who passed Ernst for the win.
We will meet again
Kamloops beat Peterborough 10-2 in their last two meetings on Sunday. But with 7:05 left in that game, Usman punched a jab at Blazers defenseman Kyle Masters, who fell awkwardly into the boards.
The teachers had to be lifted from the ice and taken to the Royal Inland Hospital. Coach and general manager Sean Clouston said Monday that the Blues missed the tournament with a lower-body injury.
This report from The Canadian Press was first published on June 1, 2023.