Street Cats split with the Soo

SAULT STE. MARIE-The Alpena Street Cats split a pair of Midwest Junior Hockey League games with the Soo Firehawks over the weekend, losing 6-5 on Friday and winning 5-1 on Saturday at Big Bear Arena.

Alpena (4-3) broke a 1-1 tie in the third period of Saturday’s game with a four-goal outburst in less than three minutes to skate away with the win.

Vladislav Khasanov, Pavel Bocharov, Sergey Deev and Andrei Kiselev each lit the lamp for the Street Cats in the final frame. Deev ended the game with two goals, Bocharov had a goal and an assist and Khasanov had two assists to go with his goal.

Goaltender Vlad Graevski stopped 52 shots to earn the win.

The Street Cats did a nice job staying out of the penalty box after they were called for just four infractions in both games.

Alpena led nearly all of Friday’s game before Soo’s Nicholas Murphy netted the game-winner with 5:01 to play.

Murphy now has 28 points (18-10) in eight games and finished Friday’s game with a hat trick.

Konstantin Khramov scored a hat trick for Alpena and Deev and Andrei Yanovich had single tallies. Assists went to Khasanov (2), Bocharov (3), Yanovich, Sergey Merzlov, Kam Russell and Savelii Skurikhin. Alpena threw 41 shots at Soo netminder Justus Mancuso.

Graevski had another stellar game, making 54 saves on 60 shots. Graevski has a 2.61 goal against average in seven starts, third best in the league. His .935 save percentage is second best in the league.

Goals from Khramov and Murphy left the two teams tied after one period, but Alpena pulled ahead in the middle frame with three goals midway in the first eight minutes from Khramov, Yanovich (power play) and Deev. Deev’s goal gave Alpena a 4-1 lead.

Soo cut the lead to 4-3 late in the second period before Khramov completed his hat trick to give Alpena a 5-3 lead with four minutes left. Ryan Marshall answered for the Firehawks to minutes later and Alpena went into intermission ahead 5-4.

The lead was shortlived however as Murphy scored just 1:12 into the period to tie the game at five and then netted the game winner a few minutes later.

Alpena hosts the Firehawks for two games this weekend. The first game is 7 p.m. on Friday at Northern Lights Arena.