The Portage Terriers are looking to take control of their second-round series. The Dogs lead the Virden Oil Capitals 1-0 in the best-of-seven affair but they plan to make it 2-0 tonight in Virden.
It took an extra 22 minutes of play but the Terriers were able to fend off the Oil Capitals in Game 1 on Friday, winning 4-3 in double overtime.
Portage had a 3-0 lead early in the second period but gave up three unanswered goals the rest of the way. Fortunately for the Terriers, they put the pressure on during the extra time and ended up finding the back of the net.
Defenceman Brandon McCartney scored the game-winner.
He says they have to make defence a bigger focus in Game 2.
"I think we just need to bear down in the D-zone and make sure we're tying guys up. We can't blow a 3-0 lead, especially in the playoffs," McCartney explains. "We just have to make sure we're sticking with our guys, communicating in the D-zone, and making sure we're winning our battles. That's something we didn't do too well (in Game 1). We're going to look to improve on that going forward."
The Terriers are undefeated on the road so far in the playoffs, beating Niverville 5-2 in Game 2 and 3-1 in Game 4. The Nighthawks also took Portage to double overtime in Game 1 of the first-round, so McCartney believes they know what to expect from Virden tonight.
"They're going to come out buzzing," McCartney continues. "It's their first home game of the second round. For us, it's just going to be about our start and making sure we're getting on them early. Hopefully, we can get out to an early lead because if we go down early, it's not going to help us. We have to make sure we come out flying and put the pressure on them."
Portage gave up the opening goal in their first four playoff games but have now started their last two games with 3-0 leads.
The Terriers and Oil Capitals face off tonight in Virden at 7:00 for Game 2 in the best-of-seven semi-final. The game will be broadcast live on CFRY.