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Demonds handle DHS: Bismarck High uses its depth to defeat Midgets in West Region game

Press Photo by Royal McGregor Dickinson sophomore forward Michael McChesney, right, gets ready to shoot the puck against Bismarck senior defenseman Ryan Gustafson during a West Region game on Thursday at Dickinson Recreation Center.

The Dickinson High boys hockey team had enough firepower to go toe-to-toe with Bismarck High for the initial 17 minutes.

Over the next 34 minutes, however, the Demons showed its strength in numbers.

“When you play a team like Bismarck with the depth they have, if you don’t skate a full three periods, they are going to take advantage of it,” Dickinson head coach Dallas Kuntz said.

Bismarck netted three third-period goals en route to a 5-1 West Region win over the Midgets on Thursday at Dickinson Recreation Center.

“We have to give a lot of credit to Dickinson,” Bismarck head coach Mike Peluso said. “They had a good game plan early in the game by keeping the score low. They get a bounce here or there and it’s a different hockey game. We just kind of held on.

“Our depth walked us through the first period and helped us in the later stages of the game.”

After the first period, the Demons and Midgets were tied 0-0. Bismarck had 18 shots on goal, while Dickinson supplied 6.

Bismarck didn’t wait long in the second period to score its first goal. Michael Matzke posted the opening goal 1:53 into the second.

Dickinson junior forward Matt Pavek tied the game less than 9 minutes later with on a rebound from senior defenseman Tim Knudson’s wrist shot.

The Demons regained the lead with 3:35 left in the second period after junior forward Mickey Folske, who transferred from Dickinson to Bismarck in the offseason, scored his fourth goal of the season. Folske led the team with 24 points last season.

“It weird from the start playing against them in Bismarck,” Folske said about playing his former team. “It was a surreal feeling.”

In the third period, the Midgets found themselves in the penalty box three times and the Demons scored two power-play goals. Bismarck three third-period goals came from Lucas Butts, Jared Spooner and Cody Evanson.

“The first and second periods were great,” Dickinson junior forward Kass Dvorak said. “In the third period, penalties killed us. We skated with them. We played hard. They played hard. It was a good game until the penalties.”

Brett Malkmus claimed the win for the Demons with 16 saves, while Dickinson sophomore Eric Schaper was tagged with the loss. Schaper finished with 37 saves.

The Midgets set their focus on Jamestown for a West Region game at 5 p.m. Saturday. The game’s theme is going to be blackout.

Kuntz wants his team to have the mentality the season is now the start of the West Region Tournament.

“Starting Saturday our West Region Tournament is underway,” Kuntz said. “Jamestown is No. 5 and we are No. 6 in the standings. In order for us to jump them, we have to beat them. We need to win out. Saturday is a huge game for us.”

Bismarck 0 2 3 – 5

Dickinson 0 1 0 – 1

FIRST PERIOD: No scoring.

SECOND PERIOD: 1, B, Michael Matzke (Bryce Eckman, Ryan Gustafson), 15:09. 2, D, Matt Pavek (Tim Knudson, Tate Martel), 7:57. 3, B, Mickey Folske (Cody Evanson, Johnny Witzke), 3:35.

THIRD PERIOD: 4, B, Lucas Butts (Jaxon Ford, Zach Kraft), 13:59. 5, B, Jared Spooner (Tre Kautzman, Stephen Dora), 12:01. 6, B Evanson (Jake Heinert, Brandon Gieszler), 6:49.

SAVES: B, Brett Malkmus 6-7-3–16. D, Eric Schaper 18-10-9–37.