The Minnesota River Bulldogs boys hockey team tipped the win column two more times last week, with victories over Luverne and LaCrescent.
The Bulldogs emerged the victors in a close and exciting 3-2 game against Luverne last Friday, Jan. 29.
Luverne hopped out to an early lead, scoring on Bulldogs goalie Mitch Kotek barely more than a minute into the first period.
Brady Sowder, with an assist by Brendan O’Keefe, evened the score roughly seven minutes later, and the two teams ended the first period tied 1-1.
Sowder then emerged energized in the second period, as he netted his second goal just 27 seconds into the second period, thanks to an assist by Jake Rimstad.
A few minutes later, Luverne evened things up again, 2-2.
As the period clock ticked down, Bulldogs player Dylan Hunt found the back of the net, with assists by O’Keefe and Logan Throldahl.
The Bulldogs managed to hang onto their lead and Kotek delivered a flawless third period in the net to earn the win.
The Bulldogs easily outskated and outshot Luverne, taking 53 shots on goal to Luverne’s 24.
“Our guys battled hard and found a way to win a big road game for us,” Coach Shea Roehrkasse said. “We did a great job of closing things out late in the game and limiting their chances. Tuesday will be a fun rematch when they come to town.”
Bulldogs Blow Past La Crescent-Hokah
Prior to Friday’s victory, the Bulldogs also defeated La Crescent-Hokah 6-1 last Tuesday, Jan. 26, at the Le Sueur Community Center.
The Bulldogs highlighted a skilled and diverse lineup, as six different players scored in the win.
The first period saw the Bulldogs take a 3-2 lead, as Mason Reinhardt and Seth Reicks scored goals around one from La Crescent.
The rest of the game was all Bulldogs. In the second period, Sowder, Tyler Erickson and Judson Narum combined to give the Bulldogs a 5-1 lead. Both Sowder and Narum’s goals were scored on power plays.
The Bulldogs capped it off with a goal by Throldahl in the third period to earn a 6-1 win.
Sowder and Alex Schaffer had two assists each in the victory, and Throldahl, O’Keefe, Connor Bjorling, Blake McVenes, and Reinhardt all had one assist.
The Bulldogs outshot LaCrescent, 30-20. Kotek earned the win in the net with 19 saves.
“We played a very solid game all the way around. I thought our defensive zone was very strong most of the night, and we controlled the puck very well. It is always good to see when you have six different guys score in a game,” Roehrkasse added.
The Bulldogs have two games this week. The Bulldogs hosted Luverne for a rematch at the Le Sueur Community Center on Tuesday, Feb. 2. On Friday, Feb. 5, they are traveling to Worthington. Both games start at 7 p.m.