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It was a series that came right down to the wire, the Parkland U15 Rangers were looking to pull off what would have been a major upset. 

Heading into their first-round playoff series, the Rangers were heavy underdogs against the Wild after they were outscored 14-6 by them in a pair of regular season games. The Wild opened up the best of five with a win at the Hockey for All Centre and then, the Rangers caught fire as they won back-to-back games. The first of which came in Winnipeg and then back in Swan River for game three, Parkland took a 7-2 victory to put the Wild Red on the brink of elimination.

With a chance to move onto the second round in game 4 in McCreary, Fynn Huberdeau scored an even-strength goal with just 1:52 left in the third period to force overtime. Mark Munday of the Wild Red scored 9:13 into the first overtime to force a fifth and deciding game.

In that game, Dayson Martin put the Rangers up 1-0 after 20 minutes; however, the Rangers struggled in their end during the second period as they gave up six goals and trailed 6-3 after 40 minutes.

In desperation mode to start the third, Parkland scored two quick goals to trim the deficit to one. Ultimately, the Rangers would not get any closer as they lost the game 9-6 as they saw their season come to an end in Manitoba's capital.

With the off-season now here, Matt Kustra wants to thank all of the team's amazing supporters throughout the season especially the fans that cheered on the team during their two home playoff games in Swan River and McCreary.

"It felt like we were back at a big junior playoff game," said Kustra. "You could hear the fans, they were so excited all game. Our players fed off that energy and were talking about it after the game. It was a pretty special atmosphere to be a part of and I want to thank all the fans for coming out, it meant a lot to all of us."

As Matt now reflects on the 2023-24 season and everything that it brought, one play will stick out to him. The Wild Red had just scored a couple of minutes before cutting Parkland's lead to 3-1 in the first period of game 3.

Noah Smigelsky lost his stick in the offensive zone and going up against three members of the Wild Red in the corner, Smigelsky found a way to kick the puck free in front of the net where Dayson Martin was waiting and with just one second left in the first, Martin found the back of the net to give the Rangers a 4-1 lead after 20 minutes and they never looked back in a 7-2 win.

"Wild Red was deflated after that and we just took it from there," ended Kustra. "I've been around the game for many years and I have never seen a player with no stick make a play like that and see it translate to a goal with just a second left. I was jumping up and down, it was incredible."

The 2023-24 edition of the Parkland U15 Rangers provided plenty of excitement for fans across the region and now, the countdown to the 2024-25 season begins.