Terrier comeback falls short
In the end, a comeback of epic proportions was not to be for the Portage Terriers.
After rallying from a 3-0 series deficit to even the last-ever ANAVET Cup series, the Terriers fell 4-0 to the host Humboldt Broncos in the seventh and deciding game Sunday night.
Andrew Johnson scored in the first and second periods to pace the Broncos, while Taylor Johnson and Ryan Marshall also scored for Humboldt. With six goals in the series, Marshall, a former Swan Valley Stampeder, was named the series MVP.
Adam Iwan stopped 30 shots for Portage while Matt Hrynkiw turned aside all 24 attempts he saw from the Terriers to record the shutout.
The Terriers had forced Game 7 with a 5-4 triple-overtime win on Saturday night.
Head coach Blake Spiller felt there were chances early in the second period where Portage could have clawed back into Sunday's game, but were thwarted by Hrynkiw.
"Tonight's game was there for the taking," said Spiller. "We were fine today, but just didn't seem to have that energy. If we got a goal when we were down 2-0, we could've maybe mounted a bit of an attack.
"For the most part, it was a good game. Obviously, two very tired teams, but it still could've went either way in the second period, then they got the third goal. It was another mistake that cost us, and then they got another one right away.
"4-0 after two is going to be tough sledding after that."
With the long game Saturday coupled with being the fifth game in six nights, both clubs were bagged by Sunday.
"Obviously, it was a long series and a long night last night (Saturday)," said Spiller. "They got a couple goals early here and seemed to get a spark and got their crowd going.
"We played fairly well at times, but made a couple mistakes and they made us pay. The puck didn't want to seem to bounce for us tonight."
For more, please see Monday's edition of the Portage Daily Graphic.