Pioneers Reach Final!

by Frank Geyer

The Ladner Pioneers are one win away from their second straight national title after defeating the Snake Island Muskies 10-8 Friday in one of the two semifinals. Ladner trailed 4-3 after 20 minutes but out-gunned Snake Island 4-2 in the middle stanza to take a 7-6 lead into the final frame. The Muskies tied the score at 4:46 and then took the lead 8 minutes later. James Rahe, with his second goal of the game, tied it with 5:24 left and then Phil Caputo, with his second of the game, notched the game winner with 1:26 showing on the clock. Jeff Cornwall iced the game with an empty netter with 50 seconds left, sending the Delta boys to the final for the second time in a row.

The Pioneers outshot the Muskies 44-42, with Christian Del Bianco between the pipes again, making 34 saves and picking up an assist. Austin Shanks and Spencer Bromley also scored twice, with Alex Turner adding a single. Ryan Benesch led scoring with 5 assists.

Ladner will face the Edmonton after the Miners upset the host Oakville Rock 8-7 in the other semifinal Friday, with the game winner coming with just 41 seconds left in regulation. Game time is 4:00pm Friday and can be live streamed here.