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Lightning co-owner Oren Koules took home the bragging rights against his partner Len Barrie last night as Team B captured the two-game series at the Lightning’s Prospect camp in Victoria. Despite the best efforts of Team A’s Steven Stamkos
, who posted two goals and three assists in his team’s 7-5 victory, it was Team B that won the tie-breaking shootout on local boy Justin Courtnall’s goal in the eighth round. Each team took home a two-goal victory in the scrimmages, prompting the shootout to decide the overall winner. A standing-room-only crowd once again took in all the action at the Juan de Fuca Arena in Colwood, a Victoria suburb.
The offense picked up and the intensity stayed high as Team A took a 4-2 lead into the dressing room after the first period. A format change shortened the game to two 20-minute periods, and Lightning draft choice Mitch Fadden responded with a pair of goals in the first. He made it 1-0 on the first shift with a tip-in from Brady Leavold, and after Darryl Boyle made it 2-0 for Barrie's team, Fadden made it 3-0 by stuffing a loose puck in front.
Chris Lawrence was throwing his weight around for Koules' Team B, rocking Leavold and Fadden with big hits that helped swing the momentum. Norfolk's Paul Sczezechura jammed one home for Team B to cut the deficit to 3-1, but controversy ensued soon thereafter. Alex Killorn made it 4-1 for Team A with a power-play goal set up by Stamkos, but the Team B bench erupted after the goal, pointing out the six Team A skaters celebrating on the ice. The referees refused to wipe out the goal, so Sczezechura banged home another one on the next shift to help his team stay within two.
Stamkos scored for the first time with a Lightning logo on his chest early in the second by banking a shot in off goaltender Torrie Jung, but Andreas Vlassopoulos and Tyson Barrie (Len’s son) answered to cut the deficit to 5-4 for Team B. Taylor Procyshen restored Team A’s two-goal lead after Stamkos pump-faked to freeze the goaltender and defensemen before dishing, but Lawrence buried a slapshot with two minutes left to pull Team B within one at 6-5. With victory in the two-game series in his grasp despite the one-goal deficit (Team B won 3-1 Tuesday night) Koules honorably chose to pull his goaltender in the last minute to try to tie the game, and Stamkos scored an empty-netter to force the shootout after his team’s 7-5 win.
One more practice session remains today before everyone takes time off to prepare for the Traverse City Prospect Tournament in September.