Bandits erase 2-0 deficit and score five unanswered to take Game 1 of AJHL Final with 5-2 win over Saints

Photo by Chad Goddard.

BROOKS, AB (April 21, 2023) – Danylo Korzhyletskyi broke a 3rd period tie, Caelan Fitzpatrick scored twice, and the Brooks Bandits erased a 2-0 deficit with five unanswered goals to beat the Spruce Grove Saints 5-2 on Friday night at the Centennial Regional Arena.

Ethan Barwick (St. Albert, AB) made 26 saves for Brooks, as the Bandits clawed back to take Game 1 of the AJHL Inter Pipeline Cup Final and lead the Best of Seven series 1 game to 0. Game 2 goes Saturday, April 22nd at the Centennial Regional Arena. Tickets are available at

Spruce Grove opened the scoring at 8:30 of the 1st period on the powerplay, as forward Kadyn Chabot one-timed a right circle shot to make it 1-0 Saints.

The Saints doubled the lead at 4:49 of the 2nd period, as Liam Watkins scored on a forehand shot to make it 2-0. The Bandits comeback started at 9:44, as Hunter Wallace (Oak Lake, MB) got his own rebound and elevated the puck over Saints starter Spencer Michnik to cut the lead to 2-1. Brooks tied the game at 14:43, as Jordan Hughesman (Winnipeg, MB) knocked down an Ethan Beyer (Centennial, CO) pass into the Saints net to tie the game 2-2.

Brooks took the lead at 7:41 of the 3rd period, as Korzhyletskyi (Kyiv, UA) scored from the left circle unassisted off a Saints turnover in their own zone to make it 3-2. The Bandits doubled the lead at 11:38, as Fitzpatrick (Moose Jaw, SK) backhanded a Heath Armstrong (Calgary, AB) pass from the slot to give Brooks a 4-2 advantage. The Saints emptied the net with 3:30 to play, and Fitzpatrick was able to break up the left wing and score on the empty net to make it 5-2 at 17:33. Brooks outshot Spruce Grove 12-8 in the final frame.

Game 2 is a 7:00 pm puck drop in Brooks on Saturday.