Lumberjacks chop down Bluejays in fight for Valley win
The Bluejay hockey team was itching for its first Valley win of the season when Wausau East came to the Smith Center last Thursday.
But the Lumberjacks apparently had the same thought process and executed it better, leaving town with a 10-0 triumph.
“Our kids were reminded all week about what East did to us last year,” MHS coach Chase Nelson said. “The kids seemed hungry and intense in practices leading up to the game.
“But when we hit the ice, we came out flat. East had been struggling this year, and I thought it was going to be a good matchup for us. The way we played was disappointing considering the factors, and considering we had been playing some good hockey as of late.”
Nelson took exception with East’s tactics last year, when he felt the Lumberjacks didn’t let up in a blow-out win that reached 12-2 by completion.
“Late in the game they had two kids that ended up being All-State Honorable Mention still out on the ice scoring goals,” he said. “Our kids remembered it. I thought it might help to bring it up.”
The game was scoreless until the Lumberjacks broke through with a goal with 2:40 left in the first period. Merrill appeared to be in good position, but allowed three goals in a little more than two minutes beginning with 29 seconds left in the first.
From there it snowballed, with the Lumberjacks tallying five more scores in the second to make it 9-0. They tacked on one more late in the third to reach the final score.
Colin Bailey finished with a hattrick and an assist, and Ben Feck (2 g, 1 a), Henry Nuckles (3 a), Gunnar Bode (2 a), Mikhael Rezazadeh (1 g, 1 a) and Logan Nelson (1 g, 1 a) gave multiple points.
East had held a 0-7 mark in the WVC, while Merrill was 0-2 with its abbreviated conference schedule. The Jays will play each Valley team once this year and next, while the others play twice a year.
Saves–MHS–Stephen Simon 16-7-9–32. East–Isaac Comfort 7-1-*–8; Jacob Matsche *-*-2–2.
MHS sits at 1-11 overall and 0-3 in the WVC. East is 1-7 and 3-15-1.
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