The Kalamazoo Eagles won their rematch with Mattawan 3-2 Wednesday evening, putting the two squads into a deadlock for the top spot in the SCHSHL South Division standings. The Eagles end up with the better record within the division (7-1 vs 6-2), but remaining crossover games with the Central Division keep the title up for grabs.
The lone first period goal came via Gull Lake’s James Onderlinde with 1:52 remaining, assisted by Cole Belanger. Midway through the second, concurrent minor penalties set up a Mattawan five-on-three powerplay goal. Six seconds in, Joe Petersen tied it up with assists to Logan McClish and Lucas Slager.
The Wildcats took the lead during a four-on-four with 2:17 left in the second, scored by Slager and assisted by Carson Byers. Still four-on-four, the Eagles tied the game 66 seconds later by Trent Stoner unassisted.
The clincher and only third period goal happened with 5:51 to go on a blue line slapshot by Lane Trim, assisted by Colby Skinner. Plainwell’s Huston Born was excellent in net, unofficially making 36 saves in victory. Mattawan’s Brendan Pellerito had a strong showing as well with 35 stops.
With the result, the Eagles and Mattawan are both tied at 16 points atop the South Division standings. The Eagles have only one crossover game left against Mid-Michigan Saturday afternoon, plus a non-conference trip to Rockford Friday. The Wildcats still have crossovers with Lumen Christi Saturday and the Eastside Stars next Wednesday. Overall, the Eagles move to 16-6 and the Wildcats drop to 15-7.