Esky icers blitz Miners
WELLS — The Escanaba Eskymos took care of business in a hurry Tuesday night as they needed just two periods to defeat the Negaunee Miners 9-1 by the mercy rule in a Divison 2 pre-regional hockey opener.
Esky, taking an aggressive approach, scored five times in the first period and added four in the second.
The Eskymos were able to keep the Miners pinned in their zone through much of the contest.
“We wanted to come out flying,” said Esky coach Matt Hughes. “That was the message sent to the boys in the locker room. These are the playoffs. You have to start on time to be successful.”
The Eskymos (8-18) return to the Hannahville Ice & Turf Complex Thursday to host Kingsford in a 7 p.m. contest.
Freshman forward Brayden Stannard scored a hat trick with his first, a shorthanded goal off a turnover in the Negaunee zone, for a 2-0 lead seven minutes, 24 seconds into the contest.
He also scored from the low slot for a 4-0 cushion at 14:03 of the first and completed his hat trick from the doorstep for a 6-1 advantage 7:44 into the second.
Junior forward Jacob LaFave scored for the first tme 5:25 into the opening frame, redirecting a shot from just inside the blue line by freshman defenseman Kadon Hayes for a 1-0 lead.
He also assisted on Esky’s seventh goal from the high slot by senior forward Aaron Young 8:28 into the second frame.
Senior defenseman Hayden Haslow concluded the scoring from between the faceoff circles with 29 seconds left in the contest.
Sophomore defenseman Grant LaMarche, junior defenseman Chris Sliva and sophomore forward Kyle Krutina also scored for the Eskymos, who outshot the Miners 33-8.
“They played us pretty hard the last time (in a 5-1 Esky victory Jan. 30),” said Hughes. “I’m sure they expected this to be a tighter game. We played more aggressive tonight, but we also played within our system. The guys played hard down low and made some very good plays. They worked hard in the offensive and defensive zones and did a good job moving the puck. We were disciplined.”
Trent Sweeney scored Negaunee’s lone goal from the low slot 4:39 into the second frame.
Esky senior goaltender Brodie Goodard collected seven saves and Negaunee’s Nolan Corwin hd 24.
Negaunee 0 1 — 1
Escanaba 5 4 — 9
E — LaFave (Hayes, Reinhart), 5:25
E — Stannard (unassisted, shorthanded), 7:24
E — LaMarche (Young, Rinehart), 9:30
E — Stannard (Carne, Wickham), 14:03
E — Krutina (Silverstone, Haslow), 16:07
N — Sweeney (??????), 4:39
E — Stannard (Wickham), 7:44
E — Young (LaFave), 8:28
E — Sliva (Carne, power play), 11:23
E — Haslow (unassisted), 16:31
Shots on goal: Escanaba 33, Negaunee 8
Power plays: Escanaba 1-1, Negaunee 0-1
Goaltender saves: Escanaba (Goddard 7), Negaunee (Corwin 24).