AUBURN — Tanner Anctil came through in the clutch for the Lewiston Blue Devils.

The junior forward had a hat trick in eighth-seeded Lewiston’s 6-2 win over No. 9 Windham/Westbrook/Bonny Eagle/Sacopee Valley in a Class A preliminary round boys hockey game at Norway Savings Bank Arena on Wednesday.

“He has had some ups and downs the last couple of weeks, but he responded tonight with a hat trick,” Lewiston coach Jamie King said.

The Blue Devils advance to face No. 1 Edward Little (16-2) in the quarterfinals Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at Norway Savings Bank Arena.

Bobby Fothergill for Trail Blazers (7-11-1) scored on the back door after a cross-ice pass from Aiden Hartwell 22 seconds into the third period to cut the deficit to 3-2.

That’s when Anctil stepped up, scoring twice in a 55-second span while the Blue Devils were shorthanded.

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First, Anctil skated all the way from the defensive zone to the offensive zone and beat Trail Blazers goalie Porter Krause with a wrist shot from the slot to restore Lewiston’s two-goal advantage, 4-2, at the 5:05 mark. Cody Dionne was credited with an assist.

“I knew Cody just missed on the breakaway, 10 seconds (earlier),” Anctil said. “I said, now is our chance, we have to capitalize on this one, get our team back in the game, get momentum going on our side.”

Anctil scored the second shorthanded goal soon after coming off the bench. He skated into the offensive zone to put home a rebound at the six-minute mark.

“I have been telling them all year, let us try to get some (shorthanded) goals,” Lewiston coach Jamie King said. “When the (Trail Blazers) scored that second goal to make it 3-2, for (our) guys to respond with two shorthanded goals (was big).”

Andrew Theriault added another goal midway through the third period to extend the Blue Devils’ lead to 6-2.

“We kept grinding, kept playing, guys never gave up, that’s pretty much what happened,” Trail Blazers coach Robert Fothergill said.

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Anctil also helped open the game’s scoring.

Lewiston’s Colton Daniels charged the slot to get to a loose puck, then he fired it top shelf for a 1-0 lead nearly four minutes into the first period. Anctil had the assist.

“We wanted to come out strong, come out quick and get momentum on our side right away,” Anctil said.

Ethan Blue scored for the Blue Devils early in the second period for a 2-0 lead.

Anctil scored his first goal of the game with 4:45 remaining in the second period.

The Trail Blazers started to mount a comeback when Aiden Hartwell scored at the end of the period to cut the deficit to 3-1.

Evan Greaton made 20 saves in the victory for Lewiston and Porter Krause stopped 40 shots for the Trail Blazers.

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