Although the outcome could have been better for the Bluejay varsity hockey team last week as they fell in back to back bouts with Stevens Point and Wausau East, it could equally have been much worse. The crew not only capped off their three-game home stretch with a 1-0 win over Shawano Saturday night, but nearly upset Wausau East last Tuesday, falling 4-3.
Saturday’s clash with the Hawks stood dead locked with goose eggs until the second period when Christian Matson fired a shot true, assisted by Austin Burgener and Joe Ladewig.
Bluejay goalie Bryce Broeking held steadfast through the third to make Matson’s goal the game winner, despite a flurry of 39 shots on-goal.
“Shawano played hard,” commented head coach Bill Hauswirth.
“Our goaltending kept us in the game and allowed us to win. Again, we have to compete and run our system. We have to start taking what we do in practice into our games. If we can do that we will have more success.”
SNO: 0 0 0-0
MRL: 0 1 0-1
Thursday’s bout with Stevens Point turned into more of a rout rather quickly.
The Panthers came out of the blocks firing on all cylinders, hammering out 7 goals before the Bluejays landed on the board midway through the second on Adam Detert’s solo shot.
The final would stand at 14-2 when the ice cleared Thursday night.
Santiago Rodriguez popped in the second and final score for Merrill early in the third, assisted by Burgener and Ladewig.
Broeking (34 shots) and Will Schlagel (18 shots) split time in the net.
“We ran into a buzz saw,” Hauswirth added. “They have a deep talented team. At times we competed very well, but their speed got us.”
SPT: 3 6 5-14
MRL: 0 1 1- 2
Jockeying with the ‘Jacks
The Lumberjacks drew first blood Tuesday night en route to a 4-3 win, scoring the first goal after just 1:49 into the game.
The Jays answered early in the 2nd on a team effort from Brian Root and Burgener, then took the lead just over a minute later when Matson and Root took a trip of their own to the net.
Unfortunately, East would find their second wind and dominated the third period with a barrage of three goals to jump up 4-2.
The Jays would manage one final true shot and draw within a point of a tie in the waning minutes of the game, thanks to the duo of Burgener and Root.
“Wausau East came and took it from us,” Hauswirth said. “We have to be able to play the full 51 minutes with intensity. We have to compete better! If we can do that good things will happen.”
East: 1 0 3-4
MRRL: 1 1 1-3