Dickinson High Midgets boys hockey grabs physical win over Mandan

For the better part of three periods Tuesday evening, the Dickinson High boys hockey team had trouble creating separation from Mandan. The Braves seemingly had an answer for everything, never allowing the Midgets to create a two-goal lead. Mandan...

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Dickinson High junior forward Tyler Kostelecky, right, embraces freshman Ryan Bren, center, and senior Michael McChesney following Kostelecky’s goal in the third period against Mandan Tuesday at the West River Ice Center. (Parker Cotton/The Dickinson Press)

For the better part of three periods Tuesday evening, the Dickinson High boys hockey team had trouble creating separation from Mandan.

The Braves seemingly had an answer for everything, never allowing the Midgets to create a two-goal lead. Mandan’s timeliness ran out 6 minutes, 38 seconds into the third period when Dickinson freshman Ryan Bren provided the eventual game-winner in a 6-3 victory at the West River Ice Center.

“There was so much momentum that we came out with in the third, so it felt pretty good,” Bren said.

Bren’s 15th goal of the year broke a 3-3 tie and gave the Midgets (6-10, 4-9 West Region) the lead for good. Dawson Kram scored his fourth goal of the season 2 minutes later for insurance, and Bren scored an empty-netter inside a minute remaining for the final margin.

“I’m so proud of Ryan,” Dickinson head coach Dallas Kuntz said. “He’s a freshman, and he comes to work every day to get getter. Throughout the season, he’s probably been one of our most consistent skaters, and we try to put him in situations to be successful. He’s taking that and running with it. Ryan came up on a big stage here.”


Bren provided the late heroics, but junior Jerzy Martin broke the ice with a goal 2:04 into the game, giving the team some life right away.

“Jerzy’s that kind of guy,” Kuntz said. “When No. 23 is rolling, that’s when the kids are up and having fun. I had a talk with him before the game about what we expect from him, and he came out and made me proud.”

Dickinson took that 1-0 lead into the second period, but Mandan earned a tic-tac-toe goal to get back in it.

Braves (8-8-1, 6-6) senior Garrett Murphy made a heads-up play from his knees to get a pass from the blue line to teammate Colyn Haugen to the left of the crease. Haugen flipped a quick centering pass to Quinn Halstengard, who put the puck past Dickinson junior goalie Greg Haataja.

Martin scored his second goal of the game 4 minutes later on an assist from Michael McChesney, but Austin Leingang scored a power play goal for the Braves with three and a half minutes to play in the second period.

“I don’t think we came out with the type of pace we wanted to,” Mandan head coach Matt Mullally said, “but I think we got it going in the second, and it showed with those two goals. We felt good going into the third tied, but we just couldn’t get that first goal - that lead. We just couldn’t string the goals together.”

Dickinson junior Tyler Kostelecky scored off a Bren assist in the opening minutes of the final period, but Halstengard ensured that the lead wouldn’t last long, scoring 5:21 into the frame.

About a minute later is when Bren rebounded a McChesney shot and put the puck past Mandan’s Sawyer Schmidt.


Haataja stopped 34 shots in the win.

The teams played a clean game in the first period, but the final two saw nine combined minor penalties, amping up the physicality level, Bren said, and making the win more gratifying.

“The intensity definitely came up in the third period,” Bren said, “but we stuck with it and showed who we really are. We’ve been losing some games where we’re trying to prove ourselves, and this is one of those nights where we’re still trying to prove ourselves, so I think we got a pretty good grasp on it with all the intensity.”

M  0  2  1 -  3

D  1  1  4 -  6

FIRST PERIOD: 1, D, Jerzy Martin, 2:04.

SECOND PERIOD: 1, M, Quinn Halstengard (Garrett Murphy, Colyn Haugen), 4:21. 2, D, Martin (Michael McChesney), 8:56. 3, M, Austin Leingang (Ty Leingang, Jarad Zittleman), 13:28.


THIRD PERIOD: 1, D, Tyler Kostelecky (Ryan Bren), 3:38. 2, M, Halstengard (Leingang), 5:21. 3, D, Bren (McChesney), 6:38. 4, D, Dawson Kram (Michael Herauf, Martin), 8:43. 5, D, Bren, 16:44.

SAVES: M, Sawyer Schmidt 6-7-13-26. D, Greg Haataja 10-15-9-34.

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