By Derek Simon [email protected] The Hastings Boys Hockey Team played their last two regular season games this week. Both games were non-conference matchups for the Raiders. On Monday, the …
By Derek Simon
The Hastings Boys Hockey Team played their last two regular season games this week. Both games were non-conference matchups for the Raiders. On Monday, the Raiders hosted the Blake Bears. The Bears entered the game with an 8-6-1 record. On Thursday, Hastings hosted the Bloomington Jefferson Jaguars. Jefferson came into the game with a 7-9 record on the season.
The Bears came out fast and scored just 1:20 into the game to take a 1-0 lead and would hold the lead through out the first period. The Bears outshot the Raiders 8-6 in the period.
The second period saw both teams create more scoring chances and shots. Even with the more open game, neither team could score until 10:06 of the period. That is when the Raiders Luke Savage tied the game 1-1. A single assist to John Chorlton on the goal. The game looked like it was going to stay tied after two periods, but Blake was able to score with just 16 seconds left in the period to regain the lead 2-1. Both teams had 11 shots in the period.
Blake took control of the game nearing the mid-way point of the third period. Goals at 6:35 and 7:10 gave the Bears a 4-1 advantage. Blake would score the last goal of the game at 13:22 as the Bears won impressively 5-1. Blake outshot Hastings 14-11 in the period and 3328 in the game. Tyler Mc-Carville had 28 saves for the Raiders.
Thursday night thirteen Raiders hit the ice for one last regular season home game. It was a night to reflect on the high school careers of seniors Jordan Costello, Kyle Bauer, Jonathon Peine, Matt Zaruba, Ben Teigland, Jager Kendall, Jax Schauer, Joe Benson, Garrett Putnam, Ethan Hagen, Alex Thompson, Simon Hedin, and Tyler McCarville.
It was a wild senior night for the Raiders against the Bloomington Jefferson Jaguars. Simon Hedin started the game between the pipes for the Raiders and was under attack the whole first period. Hastings was called four penalties in the first period, two of them five-minute major penalties. Jefferson would take advantage at 6:28 on the power play to take a 1-0 lead. The Jaguars then struck twice more at 6:46 and 7:32 to take a 3-0 lead. Although the last two goals were technically even strength goals, the Raiders were still regrouping for penalties that had just expired. Hastings answered at 9:05 on a goal from Zaruba. Assists to Savage and Stephen Reifenberger. After another Hastings penalty, the Jaguars took a 4-1 lead on the power play at 13:42. Soon after the goal, Hastings answered with a power play goal of their own at 14:20. Jake Harris scored with a single assist to Peine. Jefferson led after a crazy first period 4-2.
“When you have the number of penalties that we had, I mean it was from the first shift on. We basically were short-handed the whole period. It wasn’t one of those ones where you know it’s five on three and a bunch of penalties stacked on top of each other, it’s like we would get out of the box, and then take another penalty and then get out of the box to take another penalty so anytime that happens, you know you are just kind of in a scramble mode.” Stated head coach Adam Welch.
The Raiders were outshot 21-7 in the period and had taken 14 minutes in penalties. Hedin made 17 saves in the period. Despite his solid play the coaching staff made the difficult decision to pull him after the first period.
“It was a really tough decision, it’s one of those things that it’s kind of more to motivate everybody else around us, to try and get everybody else going, we can’t necessarily pull other guys, it’s not his fault that we were down for the two. It was not one of the guy’s fault, but we wanted to make a statement to other guys that hey you guys need to pick this up too so again it is unfortunate, and I feel bad for Simon. We’re certainly not blaming him for it.” Said Welch on his decision to pull Hedin.
The Raiders seemed to respond to Welch’s message. The team regrouped after the first intermission. Hastings cut the Jefferson led to one goal at 4-3 when the teams leading goal scorer, Schauer, scored at 8:27 of the period. A single assist to Kyle Bauer on the goal. Although it would be the only goal of the period, Hastings had shifted the momentum of the game outshooting the Jaguars 15-5 in the period.
“I thought we really outplayed him in second period that we had multiple chances to score could have very easily been tied. To only be down one going in the third period now if you can look at that game as a whole and to be down one going in the third period feeling free to play. I thought I guys did a good job.” Stated Welch on the Raiders strong second period.
Hastings continued to battle in the third period and they eventually tie the game at 6:56 of the period. Schauer again scored with an assist from Bauer. The final ten minutes of regulation saw both teams have scoring chances turned away and the third period would end with the score tied at 4-4. Hastings outshot Bloomington Jefferson 11-9 in the period.
The Raiders completed the comeback victory just 1:30 into overtime as Jake Harris nets the game winner with an assist to Peine. McCarville would claim the victory recording 15 saves in relief.
Hastings earned the 4th seed in the section playoffs and will host 5th seeded Northfield on Thursday night in a quarterfinal matchup. The winner of the game will then face the winner of top seeded Lakeville South and 8th seeded Rochester John Marshall. If Lakeville wins as expected, the semi-final game would be played at Lakeville South. If Rochester upsets Lakeville, the game would be played at winner of Hastings and Northfield.
“They had a good year they played their big nine schedule and they’ve beat some good teams. They beat in Mankato East a top five class a team. they have done a great job this year of, beating some of the higher teams that they played. Last year, we played towards the end of the year the only time we played them in a really long time so we’re looking forward to a home playoff game on Thursday.” Said coach Welch of Northfield, Hastings quarterfinal opponent.
They are the number one seed, they are by far the best team in the section they, they might be, the best team in the state. You know they’re a top five team, so anybody that wants to go to state tournament, they’re the team that everyone’s gonna have to beat to do that.” Stated Welch on the heavy favorites to win the section title, Lakeville South.
Jax Schauer scores the first of his two goals in the second period against Bloomington Jefferson. Jax ultimately scored the game tying goal that allowed the Raiders the come from behind win in Hastings on Thursday. Photo by Bruce Karnick