Yellowjacket Men Drop Two to Open Season

St. Johns 3, Yel­low­jack­ets 1

The UWS Men’s Hockey sea­son kicked off over the week­end to a less than ideal start. The Jacket’s fell 3–1 to St. John’s at Wess­man Arena before a crowd of 857 on Novem­ber 8.

The sea­son opener started well as the Yel­low­jack­ets came out fly­ing early and con­trol­ling the pace of the game. After a penalty to St. Johns Kevin Becker at the 2:08 mark, the Yel­low­jack­ets gen­er­ated sev­eral scor­ing chances but were only able to get one shot off on Johnnie’s goal­tender Sax­ton Soley. But the Yel­low­jack­ets were able to bang one home three sec­onds after their power play had expired to take a 1–0 lead early. Fresh­man Jor­dan Shock­ley buried his first col­le­giate goal at the 4:11 mark of the first dur­ing a scram­ble in front of the net. Wes Jud­nick and Anton Svens­son assisted on Shockley’s tally.

After Shockley’s goal, the John­nies con­trolled the play for the remain­der of the game as the Jack­ets were unable to gen­er­ate much offense for the remain­der of the game. St. John’s answered on a Tyson Ful­ton goal at the 9:59 mark of the first and the two teams went to the dress­ing room tied at one. Becker fed Ful­ton in front of the net and he buried the one timer.

In the sec­ond period, the Yel­low­jack­ets were out­shot 12–6 and sur­ren­dered what ended up being the game win­ning goal. John Haeg buried his first of the year at the 8:38 mark of the sec­ond. The Jack­ets were unable to con­vert on their power play oppor­tu­nity as they were held to one shot.

Start­ing the third period down only one goal thanks to the excel­lent play of senior goal­tender Drew Strand­berg, the game was still very much in reach. The Jack­ets had two man advan­tages in the third period but failed to con­vert or even get a shot on goal. St. Johns’ Dan McNa­mara made a nifty move around a Yel­low­jacket defender and hit the top cor­ner of the net beat­ing Strand­berg on his glove side to seal the deal. The goal came at the 13:44 mark of the final period and was assisted by Becker, his sec­ond helper of the night, and Nick Senta.

Strand­berg played well in net for the Yel­low­jack­ets stop­ping 27 shots and falling to 0–1-0 on the year. Soley stopped 15 shots for the John­nies who improved to 2–1 on the sea­son. Both teams were 0–5 on the man advan­tage. UWS man­aged two shots on goal while allow­ing the John­nies nine shots in five pow­er­play oppor­tu­ni­ties. St. John’s also tal­lied two short­handed shots.

Con­cor­dia Col­lege 3, Yel­low­jack­ets 2

On Sat­ur­day night the Yel­low­jack­ets bat­tled with the Con­cor­dia Col­lege Cob­bers. Again the Jack­ets came up short allow­ing a third period goal to fall 3–2.

Once again the Yel­low­jack­ets came out strong. Just 2:26 in to open­ing period, Eric Shand put the Yel­low­jack­ets on the score­board with his first of the year. UWS defense­man Derek Stauber found his defen­sive part­ner in the right cir­cle who buried his first col­le­giate goal. The Jack­ets ended the first period on top 1–0 out­shoot­ing the Cob­bers 9–5. UWS turned to junior trans­fer goal­tender Dayn Belfour, who stopped all five shots in the period.

UW-Superior kept up the pres­sure in the sec­ond but only able to notch one goal. But it was the Cob­bers who struck first in the sec­ond period at the 2:33 mark when Jeremy John­son beat Belfour to tie it up at one. Then, at the 10:20 mark of the sec­ond, the Cob­bers took their first lead of the game when Dan Hrabowych took a friendly bounce and took off on a break­away. Belfour attempted to poke check it away but the rebound went right to Caleb Sud­er­man as he tapped it in to make it a 2–1 game.  Late in the period the Jack­ets were able to cap­i­tal­ize on a pow­er­play chance to even the game up. A shot by Derek Stauber car­omed to Yel­low­jacket fresh­man Jor­dan Neduzak who put it past Cob­ber goal­tender Chris Neomon­tis for a pow­er­play goal to even the game at two. Stauber picked up his sec­onf assist of the night. Jor­dan Shock­ley also added an assist on the goal. The Yel­low­jack­ets amassed 18 shots in the sec­ond period but only con­verted one time. The Jack­ets had five pow­er­play oppro­tu­nites in the period also only con­vert­ing one time.

Nearly mid­way through the final frame, the Cob­bers net­ted what would even­tu­ally be the game win­ner. Jor­dan Chris­tian­son beat Belfour to record his sec­ond point of the game and give the Cob­bers a 3–2 advan­tage. It would stay that way as the Yel­low­jack­ets couldn’t con­nect on last minute chances and took their sec­ond straight loss to open the season.

Neomon­tis was stel­lar in goal for Con­cor­dia as he stopped 37 shots en route to the vic­tory. Belfour stopped 16 shots in his first loss of the year.

UWS had sev­eral pow­er­play oppro­tu­nites but the Cob­bers penalty kill stymied the Jack­ets who were 1–8 on the man advan­tage. Con­cor­dia was 0–2 on the powerplay.

The Jack­ets (0–2-0, 0–0-0 WIAC) will hit the road this week­end to bat­tle Saint Mary’s Uni­ver­sity on Fri­day in Winona, Minn. and Hami­line Uni­ver­sity on Sat­ur­day in Fal­con Heights, Minn. Game time for both is set for 7 p.m.

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