A pair of rapid-fire, third-period goals and a stellar outing by goalkeeper Nicholas Battaglia helped the Helena Bighorns past Missoula 4-2 on Friday night.
The road win came in the first game back following the Christmas break, kicking off the Bighorns’ second half of the season with two points in the standings.
The deciding goal came off the stick of Adam Apangalook, who scored unassisted at 6:33 of the third. Just 32 seconds later, Dane Rieger fed Brendan Bessee, who sent one past Junior Bruins keeper Tanner Loucks.
Battaglia, who stopped 47 of 49 shots faced, was a wall the rest of the way, and Helena skated out of Missoula with the win.
Before the third, the teams traded goals.
First it was Missoula, with Christian Ward scoring at 13:16 of the first. Bradley Estrada, though, hammered in his 21st goal of the season with only eight seconds to play in the frame to tie it up.
Helena’s Henry Kipper scored his first goal of the season a little more than four minutes into the seconds, but then it was the Bruins’ turn to tie the game, on a Zachary Colgrove goal five minutes later to set the stage for the Bighorns’ big third period.
Helena will play again on Saturday, hosting the Glacier Nationals at the Helena Ice Arena. The puck is set to drop at 7:05 p.m.