Box Score

Scheduled Game: @Minnesota Mankato

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Game Recap

Game Recap

MEN’S HOCKEY
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 5, 2014
EXHIBITION
MINNESOTA STATE (12) TRINITY WESTERN (1)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

SPARTANS FALL TO NCAA DIVISION I MINNESOTA STATE

MANKATO, Minnesota – The Trinity Western men’s hockey team suffered a 12-1 setback at the hands of NCAA Division I No. 13 ranked University of Minnesota, Mankato in an exhibition game Sunday at the Verizon Wireless Center.

The Spartans fell behind 3-0 before the game was two minutes old and despite a first period tally from Cody Fidgett (Richmond, B.C.), TWU found itself down 5-1 after the opening 20 minutes.

The second period didn’t prove to be any better, as the Spartans allowed five more goals and were down 10-1 going into the final frame.

Despite the score line, TWU put together a strong third period effort, only allowing two goals against the high-scoring Mavericks over the last 20 minutes.

Fidgett’s marker was the only goal of the Spartans two-game weekend – which also featured a game against No. 6/7 ranked St. Cloud State in which TWU lost 8-0. The third-year Spartans forward raced down the left wing, beat the Mavericks defenceman around the outside and cut across the crease before tucking the puck in on the far side.

“I think overall, the trip, on the score clock, maybe wasn’t a success, but for our guys it helped them understand and appreciate where we need to be,” said Spartans coach Barret Kropf. “We knew coming into this weekend that we were going to measure success in different ways. The last 20 minutes, for example, we found lots of success and we had guys battling and guys being willing to block shots and finish hits. There are lots of good things to take away and build on as we head back into our conference play.”

The Spartans will return to BCIHL action Oct. 11 when they will play their home-opener against Selkirk at the Langley Events Centre.

Spartans goalie Silas Matthys (Wollerau, Switzerland) got the start in net and made 20 saves on 27 shots. Nic Clark (White Rock, B.C.) came in midway through the second period, replacing Matthys, and made 21 saves on 26 shots.

“Having Nic getting some minutes and taking half of the game off of Silas was important for his confidence and the guys’ confidence in him,” Kropf said. “He made some big stops.”

For the Mavericks, who were playing in their first game of the year, it was junior forward Bryce Gervais, sophomore forward Michael Huntebrinker and senior defenseman Brett Stern leading the way as they combined for six goals and three assists in the win.

Gervais received a Zach Palmquist pass in front of TWU’s Matthys and flipped the puck over his left shoulder to score the game's first goal, just 20 seconds in. Under a minute later, Stern intercepted an errant pass in TWU's zone and started a fast break, which ended with the Mavericks second goal, scored by Huntebrinker. Huntebrinker ended the three-goal frenzy with his second tally of the game after collecting a rebound off of Jean-Paul Lafontaine's shot from the right side.
 
After Fidgett scored to narrow the gap to two goals, the Mavericks gained back a goal shortly after, finishing the period with two goals of their own. Senior center Matt Leitner fed a cutting Gervais down the middle, right in front of the goal, and Gervais was able to back-hand the puck into the net. As the Mavericks outshot the Spartans 17-3 in the frame, they earned their fifth goal of the period with a Lafontaine punch-in after receiving forward Teddy Blueger's pass from behind the net.

Sophomore goalie Cole Huggins only saw one period of play in the game and saved two of the three shots on goal.
 
Sophomore defenseman Casey Nelson was credited with two assists in the period and three total in the game.
 
In the second period, Gervais took it the distance and dished it off to his left for sophomore Zach Stepan, who got the sixth goal for the Mavericks. Just moments later, Blueger scored on a spin move after receiving a Gervais pass.
 
The next two goals came from long distance. Defenseman Sean Flanagan wound up and launched the puck towards the net, ricocheted off a Spartan's stick and bounced in the net. Two and a half minutes later, Dylan Margonari dished the puck out to a waiting Stern and he too wound up and snuck it through Clark. Freshman Brad McClure added the Mavericks' first power play goal of the night when he scored off of a rebound. Fellow freshman C.J. Franklin's shot to end a five-goal second period.
 
In the third period, the list of scoring Mavericks got longer after Leitner tallied just minutes into the period. Stern added his second goal of the night with a wrist shot from the left side of the rink.
 
On the stats sheet, the home side outshot the Spartans 53-5 in the game, but Kropf believed it wasn’t quite that lopsided in reality.

“I found it a little bit frustrating that they put just five shots on the board for us and I’d say we probably had closer to 15 shots,” Kropf said. “If other people are looking at it and thinking we got dominated, I’d say perhaps that was the case but we certainly had more than just those five opportunities.”

Game Notes: TWU was 0 for 3 on the power play while the Mavericks were 1 for 4...this weekend marked the first time TWU had ever played an NCAA Division I opponent.

-TW-

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