There may be 64 games left in the regular season, but I don't think the one tonight between the Broncos and Warriors will be outdone anytime soon.
In a game the Broncos had no business really being in, the hometown boys fought back from a 5-1 deficit at one point to score four third period goals for a 7-6 stunner over the Warrriors. The game winner courtesy Geordie Wudrick with only 18 seconds to play.
It was like the scene in the baseball movie Fever Pitch when the die hard Red Sox fan and main character Ben missed a Red Sox game for the first time only to learn they had come back from a seven run deficit in the bottom of the 9th to defeat the hated Yankees. He was irate... if you missed tonight's game, that's probably how you might feel.
An ending so dramatic, Warriors Head Coach Dave Hunchak could only smile and shake his head. He's seen this act before.
What a tough way to lose.
Hunchak is 1-15 against his former team since taking over the Warriors bench. This loss perhaps the hardest to take.
With the Warriors going up 5-1 on a short-handed goal, assistant coach Tim Kehler said in the post-game "it was heading in that direction where you hope you can switch to straight time for the 2nd half of the game."
The Broncos somehow managed to end the 2nd period down 6-3 despite being badly outplayed for the most part. It was a game the Warriors couldn't do much wrong...for two periods.
A goaltending change to back-up Alex Sirard and a 3:23 powerplay to start the 3rd period at least gave the Broncos hope.
The Broncos came out guns blazing in the third, first scoring a PP goal on a Brad Hoban set-up to Cody Eakin at 1:02. Later on a 4-on-3, Eakin's one-timer from the right circle cut it to 6-5 at 2:35.
The Broncos continued the pressure pouring 27 shots on goal in the final frame and appeared destined to get another.
The tying goal came at 13:56 as Dillon Wagner banged home a rebound. 6-6.
The Warriors had a powerplay in the final minute for 31 seconds after a Bronco PP moments earlier went awry. Geordie Wudrick stepped out of the penalty box as Justin Dowling went for the touchdown pass. Wudrick couldn't handle the hot pass but tracked it down in the corner, beat a Warrior off the wall and used his big reach to get it around Brandon Glover in the Warriors' crease with just 18 seconds to go.
Pandemonium at the i-plex.
In our post game show I asked Assistant Coach Tim Kehler what was the first thing Head Coach Mark Lamb said to him in the coaches office.
"Where's the beer?" Replied Kehler with a laugh.
In fact, this might have been Lamber getting caught up a bit in the moment, but he said it was one of the wildest games he's ever been a part of - and he's seen a lot of hockey in his time."
Geordie Wudrick's winner was also his hat-trick goal. He said post-game he called the comeback in the face-off to open the 3rd period.
"I told (the Warriors) Travis Hamonic we were coming back in this one... he replied, not tonight. I told him just watch."
You really have to be amazed when looking back at the head-to-head meetings over the last two plus seasons. It's a script the X-Files would be envious of.
The Broncos have now won eight in a row against the Warriors going back to last season. It also moves the Broncos to 5-0 on home ice this season and 5-3 overall for a share of first place in the east division.
Next up, the Broncos continues their five game homestand as they host the Edmonton Oil Kings tomorrow night (Saturday) at the Credit Union i-plex.
One more things, the Broncos dealt 18 year-old G Chad Ketting to the Kelowna Rockets for a conditional 7th round pick in 2011.