Boys hockey: No love lost in Raptors' win over Wolfpack
It didn't take long for Park and East Ridge to renew their rivalry Saturday at the Cottage Grove Ice Arena.
Before the puck even dropped the two teams waited each other out at their respective blue lines to see who'd break first for the bench. Finally, the referees instructed both teams to the bench to get the game started.
There were plenty of penalties: the two teams combined for 79 penalty minutes, which included 14 in the third period alone.
Raptors head coach Doug Long gave the start to the line of Nick Leach, Devin Donohue and Joseph Schutz and they responded with two goals and an assist in a 5-2 victory.
"They're an energy line and we felt like we wanted to start with some energy because the last couple of games we didn't start out real sharp," Long said. "We know that they're going to give us some jump."
Derek Hammer pumped in the game's first goal 9 minutes, 50 seconds into the first period on the power play and Kevin Donohue added another goal less than a minute later to give East Ridge a 2-0 lead.
Each line had a goal for the Raptors (2-2, 1-0 SEC) who also scored two power-play goals and had a short-handed goal. East Ridge finished with 44 shots on goal and outshot the Wolfpack 33-12 through the first two periods.
Ryan McDonough had a power-play goal to start the second period and 47 seconds later Devin Donhue scored a short-handed goal to make it 4-0 East Ridge.
Park finally got a goal at the 6:23 mark of the third period when Jacob Garr scored a power-play goal to make it 4-1. The Wolfpack had 11 power-play opportunities in the game and converted on just one.
"We have to find positives in things this year and one of the things is going to be adversity," Park head coach Jay Moser said. "The guys didn't give up, 4-0, they kept at it and got a goal. They didn't give up and that's encouraging to see."
Park played without senior captain Chris Peterson, who had to serve a game misconduct after a check from behind penalty against Tartan Thursday in the season-opener.
Leach came back to score for the Raptors less than a minute later to make it 5-1. Garr added another goal at the 8:42 mark to make it 5-2.
Eagan holds off East Ridge
In its other game last week, East Ridge gave eighth-ranked Eagan a battle Thursday at the Cottage Grove Arena, but couldn't find a go-ahead goal all night.
The Raptors trailed throughout the game, but tied the game twice before giving up the game-winner at 7:41 of the third period when Jack Jenson scored from the slot on an assist from Zach Glienke for the 5-4 final.
The Wildcats, which won the section title last season, graduated a talented class from last year's team, but they still have some pieces back that can make a difference. Glienke had a goal in the first period while Kyle Stebbing and Tommy Muck added goals in the first period to put Eagan up 3-2.
"We saw tonight they still have some goods left in the cupboard," Long said.
Freshman Derek Hammer had two goals for the Raptors while Jacob Nickoloff and Ryan McDonough added goals.
Nickoloff's second-period goal capped a strong period for East Ridge, where it outshot Eagan 9-7 and picked up some momentum after Nickoloff scored with 52 seconds left in the period.
"I think that's a game that could have gone either way," Eagan head coach Mike Taylor said. "I thought they kicked us pretty good in the second and then we answered the bell in the third."
The Wildcats outshot the Raptors 31-29 for the game and 11-7 in the final period. Stebbing added his second goal of the game at 3:55 of the second period to put Eagan up 4-3.
McDonough answered with a goal 21 seconds later, but that's as close as East Ridge got.
Tyler Guck made 26 saves in the game for the Raptors.
"We started off slow, but we knew they were going to be a tough test," East Ridge senior forward Ian Penvose said. "We know we have a good squad in there. We bounced back and that shows our resiliency and we battled back."
The Raptors struggled in their defensive zone and those breakdowns led to goals for the Wildcats off faceoffs.
"Our wings need to pay attention to what's going on up top, they spent a lot of time chasing the puck," Long said. "Give credit to Mike Taylor and his group because they came hard at us and made life difficult for us especially in that third period."
East Ridge faces Apple Valley Thursday at Cottage Grove Ice Arena.
Park dominated by Tartan
Prior to facing off with East Ridge, non-conference foe Tartan dominated Park Thursday for a 4-0 win to open the season for the Wolfpack.
Zach Ledman had a two goals and an assist to lead the Titans while Eric Olheiser and Jake Jackson added goals. Jackson also had two assists.
Kyle Strand made 32 saves in goal for Park, which played without forward Nick Moser and lost senior forward Chris Peterson in the second period for a checking from behind penalty.
The Wolfpack finished with 20 shots on goal and went 0-for-4 on the power play.
Tartan finished 1-for-6 on the power play and Ledman had a short-handed goal.
Jackson opened the scoring 9 minutes, 21 seconds into the first period with a power-play goal. The Titans added two more goals in the second period. Ledman got his first goal on an assist from Jackson and Brady O'Sullivan and Olheiser added a goal at 13:44 on an assist from Jacob Picht.
Ledman got his second goal at 8:36 of the third period on a short-handed goal for the 4-0 final.
Park faces Hastings Thursday at Cottage Grove Ice Arena.