Cole Smith took the puck end to end and netted the game-winning unassisted goal to lift the Brainerd Warriors past the St. Cloud Apollo Eagles 3-2 in a Central Lakes Conference game Tuesday night at Brainerd Area Civic Center.
The win was the 10th straight for the Warriors and keeps them in first place in the conference heading into Thursday’s game when second-place St. Cloud Tech comes to town.
It was also Brainerd’s second win of the season over the Eagles, the first coming 4-3 in overtime Dec. 11.
Brainerd needed to come from behind after the Eagles had taken a 2-1 lead after the first period in which Chris Pohlkamp tallied the first goal for the Warriors, assisted by Logan Rivard.
In the second, Mason Severson broke away, going end to end short-handed for the tying score.
Defensively, the Warriors killed five Apollo power plays, including a major/misconduct opportunity.
Brainerd goalie Kyle Helmberger turned aside 22 shots as the Eagles outshot the Warriors 24-22.
Apollo 2 0 0 — 2
Brainerd 1 1 1 — 3
First period: SCA-Jared Christen (Jordan Keller, Paul Kenney) 2:54; Brd-Christopher Pohlkamp (Logan Rivard) 4:24; SCA-Jason Omann (Christen) 15:36
Second period: Brd-Mason Severson shg 6:42
Third period: Brd-Cole Smith 15:59
Shots on goal: Brd 22, SCA 24
Goalies: Brd-Kyle Helmberger (22 saves); SCA-Nick Althaus (19 saves)
Conference: Brd 8-2-0. Overall: Brd 14-4-0. Next: Brainerd hosts St. Cloud Tech 7:15 p.m. Thursday.