Minot did about everything it could to affirm it was better than the East Region's bottom feeder.
Everything but get the puck past Devils Lake goaltender Holden Kurtz, anyway.
Devils Lake, the last-place team out of the east, saw its sophomore slap away 59 shots in a 3-2 overtime win over Minot on Saturday at Maysa Arena
Devils Lake’s Damond Brokke (9) skates past Minot’s Quinn Fuchs, center, during a game Saturday at Maysa Arena. Chris Dahlen is pictured at right.
"It's frustrating when you're dominating a hockey game and you don't get to reap the benefits of that work," Minot coach Chad Burckhard said. "We played hard, we played fast, we played physical - we just didn't get pucks past the goaltender."
In what that looked like it was headed toward a shootout, Devils Lake's Cole Thompson raced down the ice with 17 seconds left in overtime, took a pass from Austin Moser and scored on Minot's Breydan Effertz for the win.
It was just one of the 16 shots Devil's Lake could manufacture. The visitors had 45 less scoring attempts than Minot (10-6-1), but they made them count.
"I thought Minot did a good job of controlling the tempo," Devils Lake coach David Zimmerman said. "We weren't as physical as they were. (Minot's) a good team, but sometimes it just takes a lucky goal to win a hockey game."
Devils Lake (6-10) jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first period after Thompson scored the first of his two goals and Tanner Elsaugh found the net.
Minot countered with a Jersey Kelly goal to begin the second period, where Minot had 18 shots on goal.
Andrew Keller scored in the third period to knot the non-league contest up at 2-2, but the two teams couldn't evade an extra session.
Minot had ample opportunities to score late, but Kurtz was just too much to overcome in the crease.
"We have to finish in clutch situations," Burckhard said. "We let them hang around and it bit us in the end."
Morgan Martelle, Daylen Benjamin and Tyler Kast all had assists for Minot.
The Magicians, currently in second place in the West Region standings, play host to Grand Forks Red River on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.