It isn't likely to mean much to the Victoria Grizzlies that they deserved better, though they did. On a night where the RBC Cup hosts poured more than 40 shots on Humboldt Broncos netminder Mathieu Larochelle, the Grizzlies fell by a 3-2 score in the waning moments of the first overtime period.
Broncos forward Shawn Hunter played hero for the Broncos, tucking a loose puck into the net with just 2.3 second remaining in an OT frame that featured countless Victoria chances and just as many key saves from Larochelle.
Grizzlies forward Derek Lee had opened the scoring at the 8:23 mark of the first period, finishing on a fine individual effort by Jonathan Milhouse with Humboldt's Tory Allan serving a boarding penalty.
The Broncos evened the game at 14:54 of the second period on a Matthew Kirzinger tally, but Justin Courtnall re-established the lead for Victoria early in the third on a pretty deke after being sent in alone by Shawn Stuart. The lead was short-lived, however, as Humboldt captain Brady Wacker tied the game at 2-2 less than three minutes later.
There was no shortage of back and forth action throughout the third period and overtime, with the Grizzlies' speed a constant threat to their opponents. Ultimately, a combination of unconverted Victoria chances, fine saves from Larochelle and a concerted Broncos forecheck proved the difference.
With the win, Humboldt advances to the Championship Game against the Vernon Vipers on Sunday afternoon. The game will be broadcast on TSN 2 at 4:30 PM on TSN 2.