Steiner, Midgets win battle against OaheThe Dickinson boys hockey team needed to contain Oahe’s Austin Wagner — and they did.
By: Royal McGregor, The Dickinson Press
The Dickinson boys hockey team needed to contain Oahe’s Austin Wagner — and they did.
The Midgets limited their mistakes en route to a 4-3 win over the high school team from Pierre, S.D., on Friday at the Dickinson Recreation Center.
“That’s the biggest thing we’ve had problems with this year is finishing what we started,” Dickinson head coach Tom Folske said. “We usually have a good period here and there. When the good shifts out number the poor ones, this is what happens.”
Along with Dickinson’s solid offensive performance, freshman goalie Nick Cruz won in his first-career varsity start.
“Nick did well,” Folske said. “We talked before the game and told him to stop the ones you are supposed to. If you catch a few of the ones you’re not supposed to, that’s what’s going to turn into a win for him.”
The Midgets’ freshman goalie had 20 saves, while Oahe’s Kyle Mammenga stopped 22 shots.
Dickinson junior Brendin Steiner scored the opening goal with 2 minutes, 4 seconds into the game. The quick start helped Cruz settle in at goal.
“I was a little a nervous before the game,” Cruz said. “That first goal really let some pressure off me.”
However, Wagner answered with a goal one minute later. Seth Varty came on for the assist. Oahe head coach Rob Kittay didn’t shy away from his offensive playmaker.
“He’s (Wagner) our main man,” Kittay said. “He scored I think 45 goals last year and had 25 assists.”
Dickinson’s offense was halted for the remainder of the first period and halfway through the second.
The Midgets (2-6) found themselves down by one after Elliot Shoop-Owens scored a short-handed goal with 7:02 left in the second.
Trevor Olheiser tied up the game 5 minutes later. Shortly after that, Steiner netted his second goal to put Dickinson ahead 3-2.
After two periods of play, Steiner knew the Midgets were in a position for a win.
“We knew they were going to come out and want it just as bad as we do,” he said. “We just had to play our position, get shots on goal and keep going hard.”
After a Dickinson penalty in the third period, the Midgets were left short-handed. An icing call brought the puck back into Oahe’s zone. Alex Turcotte won the ensuing faceoff and Austin Krank ripped a shot past Mammenga to seal the win.
“That was a good, hard shot,” Folske said. “Getting a shot on net, you never know what’s going to happen.”
Oahe (0-3) made it interesting when Wagner scored the final goal with 3:06 left to play. The Capitals pulled their goalie, but Dickinson’s defense stiffened up for the win.
Following the win, Folske looks for more production when West Region opponent Minot visits Dickinson at 4:15 p.m. today.
“We’ve got to take this confidence and use it against Minot,” he said. “They’ve got a good club and we can’t have any letdowns.”
Oahe 1 1 1 – 3
Dickinson 1 2 1 – 4
FIRST PERIOD: 1, D, Brendin Steiner (Kass Dvorak, Michael Porter) 2:04. 2, O, Austin Wagner (Seth Varty) 3:10.
SECOND PERIOD: 3, O, Elliott Shoop-Owens (James Gilkerson, Wagner) 8:58. 4, D, Trevor Olheiser (Alex Turcotte) 12:09. 5, D, Steiner (Porter, Dvorak) 13:53.
THIRD PERIOD: 6, D, Austin Krank (Turcotte) 3:29. 7, O, Wagner (Alec Norwick, Cash Anderson) 13:54.
SAVES: O, Kyle Mammenga 8-8-6–22. D, Nick Cruz 6-10-4–20.