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Junior hockey: Wilderness great with four in Game 4

The fifth and decisive game in the series will be Sunday in Cloquet at 5 p.m.

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CLOQUET — The Minnesota Wilderness have forced a fifth and deciding game in their North American Hockey League playoff series after knocking off Fairbanks 3-0 in Game 4 on Saturday, April 30 on the strength of two shorthanded goals.

Wilderness goaltender Matthew Smith stopped 31 shots for the shutout.

The teams nearly reached the halfway point scoreless before Gunner Thoreson took a slashing penalty, only for Minnesota's Ethan Wolthers to strike for the game's opening goal. Minnesota took a 1-0 lead into the third period, when Wolthers took a high-sticking minor, but Calvin Knight made it 2-0 for the Wilderness.

Thoreson kicked in an empty-netter late to ensure the series will go the distance. Sam Antenucci finished with a pair of assists.

The teams will stay in Cloquet and contest Game 5 on Sunday at 5 p.m. at Northwoods Credit Union Arena, with the winner to face Anchorage in the Midwest Division finals.

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