HOUGHTON - A four-goal outburst was the difference Friday night as the Calumet Wolverines defeated the Portage Lake Pioneers 6-4 in the final preseason exhibition for both teams.
The game was played after the Michigan Tech game against Minnesota Duluth, and was also a fundraiser for Movember, a men's health fundraising cause based around mustaches. Funds raised support prostate cancer and testicular cancer initiatives. More than $80 was raised by the two teams.
Byron Parks gave the Wolverines an early lead, but the Pioneers struck back with goals by Charlie Turner and Blake Miller to start the second period.
Wolverines forward Mike Babcock tied the score moments later, but the Pioneers took a 3-2 lead into the break after an Al Lesperance score.
Jeff Erkkila scored two goals, Zach Babcock added another and rookie forward Wyatt Smith added a fourth as the Wolverines jetted out to a 6-3 lead in the third period. Pete Rouleau added a late marker for the Pioneers, but the damage was done.
Richard Yeshe took the win in net, stopping 15 shots in the third period to move to 2-0 in exhibition play. Ryan Patrick stopped 22 of 24 shots in the first two periods for Calumet. Mike Wuthrich and Collin Kuoppila saved a combined 26 Calumet shots.
The Wolverines and Pioneers will start Great Lakes Hockey League play next weekend as the Vernon Hills (Illinois) Capitals (4-1-0) and Brookfield (Milwaukee, Wis.) Battalion (1-2-0) visit the Keweenaw.