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Tom Miller / Forum News Service, Published February 15 2013

Grafton-PR prevails in double OT

GRAND FORKS – The Grafton-Park River boys hockey team knows all about overtime at the East Region boys hockey tournament.

Last season, the Spoilers lost in double overtime in the region semifinals before winning in triple overtime in the state qualifier the next day.

Grafton-Park River was back to its overtime ways Friday at Purpur Arena, but this time the Spoilers can rest easy before the final day of the region tournament.

Johnny Robideaux scored at 1 minute, 15 seconds of the second overtime to lead the No. 4 seed Spoilers to a 2-1 win over No. 1 seed Fargo Davies.

The Spoilers advance to the region title tonight at 5:30 p.m. against the winner of Grand Forks Red River and Fargo North. The Eagles, meanwhile, will need to beat Grand Forks Central in a state-qualifying game at noon.

“It’s a nice feeling to punch our ticket to state already and go in the front door,” Robideaux said.

After Robideaux’s goal, teammates mobbed the senior forward on the ice.

“Jake Miller had a nice shot on net, it popped right on my stick and I put it home,” Robideaux said. “Coaches told us to throw pucks on net. Weird stuff happens in overtimes.”

“It was a good game, and I thought both teams played well,” Davies coach Brian Davidson said. “They just got the last one to go in overtime.”

Davies, who beat Grafton twice during the regular season, opened the scoring with a Chris Sigurdson goal in the first period.

Ben Thompson responded for the Spoilers late in the second period when he buried a rebound of a Charlie Thompson shot.

From there, Davies goalie Tucker Windels (34 saves) and Spoilers netminder Zach Nelson (23 saves) controlled play before Robideaux’s game winner.

“Zach Nelson made huge saves for us,” Spoilers coach Scott Peterson said. “Without him, we don’t win this game.”

Davies will now have to play Central in a state qualifier. The Eagles beat the Knights three times during the regular season, but twice the score was 2-1.

“We’ve got to play smart (today) and keep it in their zone as much as we can,” Davidson said. “We also have to make the most of our offensive opportunities when you have them.”

FIRST PERIOD: 1, FD, Sigurdson (Groth, Worwa) 13:57.

SECOND PERIOD: 2, GPR, B. Thompson (C. Thompson) 16:07.

THIRD PERIOD: No scoring.

OVERTIME: No scoring.

SECOND OVERTIME: 3, GPR, Robideaux (C. Thompson) 1:15.

SAVES: FD, Windels 9-10-12-3-1–34. GPR, Nelson 10-5-5-3-0–23.


Miller writes for the Grand Forks Herald