Old-fashioned, hard-checking hockey came to the St. Charles Arena on Remembrance Day.
And when it was all over, the visiting Espanola Rivermen edged the St. Charles Spirit 3-2 in Canadian International Hockey League action.
Both goalies — Espanola’s Keegan Paulette and Jonathan Goulet of St. Charles — had strong outings.
Paulette stopped 37 of 39 shots and Goulet made 30 saves.
“This game was a junior hockey classic for the ages,” beamed CIHL president Tim Clayden. “It was old-time hockey that had it all.”
St. Charles gave the 231 fans in attendance something to cheer about in the first period when Alex Hester scored to make it 1-0. Espanola countered before the period was over when Andrew Demarco tallied.
The Rivermen took a 2-1 lead in the second period on a goal by Andrei Yanovich but the Spirit tied things up on a marker by Mac Little with less than a minute to play in the middle frame.
The game appeared to be heading to overtime but with just over three minutes to play in the third period, Liam Sweeney of Espanola fired the game winner.
With the win, Espanola improved its record to 6-4 while St. Charles is now 6-3-1.
“It was a good hockey game with chances at both ends,” said Espanola head coach Tom McCarthy. “It was a tight-checking game. Our goaltending was the difference.”