Jason Jaffray recorded a hat trick and Yannick Tremblay broke a 1-1 tie with 5:51 left in regulation, sending the Manitoba Moose into the North Division Finals with a 4-1 win over the Grand Rapids Griffins in Game 7 at the MTS Centre on Tuesday night.
The Moose will take on Hamilton in the second round, beginning Saturday night in Winnipeg.
Jaffray opened the scoring 5:50 into the game with a power-play goal, and the lead held up until Scott Parse tied things up for Grand Rapids with his first postseason goal at 8:30 of the third, tipping home a shot by defenseman Dan Smith.
Tremblay, who also had two assists on the evening, scored on a shot from the bottom of the right-wing circle to put the Moose ahead for good at 14:09. Jaffray then converted on a 3-on-1 rush with 1:45 remaining, and completed his three-goal night with an empty-netter at the 19:10 mark.
Jaffray’s hat trick comes two days after Ben Walter scored three times in Providence’s Game 7 win over Hartford. There hadn’t been a Game 7 hat trick in the AHL since 1998.
North Division Final – Series "K" (best-of-7)
N1-Manitoba Moose vs. N3-Hamilton Bulldogs
Game 1 – Sat., May 5 – Hamilton at Manitoba, 8:30
Game 2 – Sun., May 6 – Hamilton at Manitoba, 8:30
Game 3 – Tue., May 8 – Manitoba at Hamilton, 7:30
Game 4 – Sat., May 12 – Manitoba at Hamilton, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sun., May 13 – Manitoba at Hamilton, 3:00
*Game 6 – Mon., May 14 – Hamilton at Manitoba, 8:30
*Game 7 – Wed., May 16 – Hamilton at Manitoba, 8:30
All times Eastern