Story by Brock Ormond
Photo: Wellington Dukes/OJHL Images
A wild and wacky victory for the Wellington Dukes sealed a season series split with the Haliburton County Huskies on Sunday.
After seeing a 3-0 first period lead evaporate, the Dukes kept clawing away and earned a 5-4 victory over the Huskies at Lehigh Arena to extend their point lead to five over their East Conference rivals.
A shaky start on Friday gave way to a better beginning on Sunday with Connor Hunt converting a Will Mitchell feed 1:40 into the game and Cory Jewitt and Pana Efraimidis burying powerplay markers to give the Dukes a head start.
Haliburton got on the comeback trail with a pair to close out the opening frame from Patrick Saini and Aidan Yarde to close the gap.
Saini then evened the score with a quick strike 29 seconds into the second off a feed from Ty Petrou, forcing the Dukes to make another push.
Sacha Trudel chipped in a rebound on a brief scramble to put the Dukes ahead again at the 12:21 mark, sending them into the break with the one-goal lead intact.
Two goals in 18 seconds within the first minute and a bit decided the game, with Wellington’s Caleb MacDonald responding after an earlier Ian Phillips equalizer.
The Dukes’ forward got his third of the season on Mitchell’s one-time shot that changed directions to beat Brett Fullerton for the eventual game-winning goal.
Hunt finished with a three-point performance, with Mitchell, Efraimidis and Ethan Quick also hitting the scoresheet multiple times.
Dimitri Tzaferis, Connor Loerzel and Ryan Schaap contributed with single assists.
Jack Lisson was the winning goaltender with 31 saves.
The Dukes improve to 28-16-0-2 on the season and will play the North York Rangers in a rare Thursday home game at 7:30 p.m.