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What a difference 24 hours can make.
The Dunedin Thunder rebounded from a 7-2 shellacking at the hands of the West Auckland Admirals on Friday night to clinch a thrilling 4-3 win in overtime on Saturday night.
Noah Gregory was the hero of the hour, firing in the winning goal just 1min 55sec into overtime to delight the home crowd at the Dunedin Ice Stadium.
The Admirals had made the early running in the second game, leading 2-0 after the first period.
Matthew Enright scored the only goal of the second, bringing the Thunder back into the game, but the Admirals led 3-1 with six minutes to play.
Enright slotted his second to make it 3-2, and Thunder captain Paris Heyd — who also contributed two assists on the night — scored the game-tying goal.
On Friday, the Admirals showed why they are second in the New Zealand league with a clinical performance, jumping to a 3-0 lead and controlling much of the game.
Gregory scored the Thunder’s first goal on the power play with 5sec left in the first period.
The Admirals scored again to make it 4-1, and while Heyd clawed a goal back for the Thunder in the second period, the Admirals added two unanswered goals in the third.
Benjamin Harford had two assists for the Thunder, which now has a perfectly balanced record of three wins, three losses, one overtime win and one overtime loss for third in the league, while Nicholas Henderson, Taylor Rooney and Vincent Cistrone all scored two goals for the Admirals.
In Christchurch, the Southern Stampede was made to fight hard to maintain its unblemished record, pipping the Canterbury Red Devils 8-7.
It was 1-1 after the first period before a scoring explosion in the second, both teams adding five goals.
The Red Devils led 7-6 before Colin McIntosh squared it for the Stampede, and Mike McRae scored the winning goal.
Liam Stewart (three goals, two assists), McIntosh (two goals, three assists) and McRae (two goals, four assists) scored freely for the Stampede, which was 12 from 12 before playing the Red Devils again last night.