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Boys Hockey: Penalty shot highlight of Brainerd's rout

Who knows better how to beat a goalie than a former NHL goalie? Brainerd Warriors goalie coach Glenn "Chico Resch" played 14 years in the NHL with four different teams. Credit him with as assist on Jack Evans' goal on a penalty shot during the op...

Brainerd’s Andrew Muesing (9) makes a sharp turn Thusday as Willmar’s Grant Duininick slides on the ice. (Kelly Humphrey, Brainerd Dispatch - Gallery)
Brainerd’s Andrew Muesing (9) makes a sharp turn Thusday as Willmar’s Grant Duininick slides on the ice. (Kelly Humphrey, Brainerd Dispatch - Gallery)

Who knows better how to beat a goalie than a former NHL goalie?

Brainerd Warriors goalie coach Glenn "Chico Resch" played 14 years in the NHL with four different teams. Credit him with as assist on Jack Evans' goal on a penalty shot during the opening period of Thursday's 10-3 rout of the Willmar Cardinals at Essentia Health Sports Center.

Evans was awarded a penalty shot when a player other than Willmar goaltender Caden Johnson covered the puck.

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Warriors 10, Willmar 3

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The key: Brainerd outshot the Cardinals 34-16

Conference: Brd 5-1-1, W 2-7-0

Overall: Brd 10-6-1, W 6-12-0

Next: Roseau at Brainerd 2:15 p.m. Saturday.

--- "Going into it, I was hoping to go to my backhand because that's where the goalie's glove was," Evans said. "I didn't want to get on the side as his blocker and stick because then there's more room for him to save it. I was working on that move with our goalie coach Chico Resch the other day at practice so it's kind of ironic I got to take a penalty shot the next game."

Warriors head coach Dave Aus wasn't sure the referee was going to call it before he asked senior Sam Selisker who pointed out that the puck had been covered by a non-goalie.

"It was a heads-up play by Sam to remind those guys," Aus said, "and that's a pretty gutsy call. The game was still tight (2-0) at the time.

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KLICK! Photo Gallery - Bainerd Boys Hockey vs Willmar - 138 images by Kelly Humphrey  

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"In terms of choosing, Matt Fischer's been hot. He's a great player and Jack is just a natural goal scorer. I had to pick somebody that was on the ice. It was between those two so I thought we'll go with Jack. He scored the game-winning goal the other night (against Sartell)."

The Warriors were buzzing from the opening faceoff, scoring four times in each of the first two periods, outshooting Willmar 34-16 with 24 quality scoring chances to the Cardinals' 10. The final period was played with the clock running since Brainerd entered the session with a 7-goal edge.

Nine different Warriors scored and four Brainerd players notched their first goals of the season. Luke Wiskow scored his first two and Luke Johnson, Andy Muesing and Billy Kendall each tallied once for the first time this season. Eight different Warriors collected assists.

"I told the guys after the second we're going to play the top lines one shift in the third, then we're going to let the other guys go because that's my old high school first of all," Aus said. "I didn't want to rub it in too much.

"What (a lopsided game) does is it allows other guys to play. Then the kids were excited. We had a bunch of guys get their first goals tonight. Luke Wiskow has been playing really well the last two weeks. For him to get two tonight, hopefully that will kick-start him. We need him at the end of the year here."

The second line of Wiskow, Dylan McLain and Justin Marthaler accumulated six points.

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"Those guys played well," Aus said. "It would have been nice to get (senior Brenden) Stay one there at the end. He had a whole net open. He comes and works so hard. Guys like him and Muesing I have so much respect for because they come here every day and they work as hard or harder than anybody. They don't always get to play as much and sometimes not at all."

Fischer and Wiskow scored in the third period as Brainerd improved to 5-1-1 in the Central Lakes Conference, 10-6-1 overall.

Leading 4-0 after one, the scoring parade continued in the second. Brainerd scored four times after the Cardinals' Isaac Kobenia tallied on a power-play backhand 19 seconds in. Kobenia finished with two goals.

Johnson started the second-period scoring from the top of the circle with a shot that sent the goalie's water bottle flying in the air. Wiskow scored his first goal off a blast by McLain. Eric Stout took a crisp back-door pass from Mitch Andres to make it 7-1. Less than three minutes later, Gavin Andres hit the pipe and Muesing smacked in the rebound for a 7-goal edge.

It could have been worse as Mitch Andres hit a pipe when the Warriors were short-handed. In the first, the Warriors erupted for three goals in the last six minutes and a commanding 17-4 lead in shots, 12 of which were quality chances.

McLain opened the strafing at 5:40 when he took a pass from Marthaler and scored with a defender draped all over him. Kendall's goal from the point went through a crowd at 11:01 and appeared to be redirected by a Willmar defenseman. Josh Howieson made it 4-0 at 15:38 when he took a long pass flipped in the air by defenseman Happy Rivard.

Willmar's best chance in the first came at 12:38 when Kobenia slashed between two Warrior defenders and broke in alone on goalie James Engen who poked the puck away. Engen finished with 13 saves.

Brainerd resumes Section 8-2A action Saturday when it hosts Roseau. The Rams are 9-9-1 after losing their last two games to Duluth East and Moorhead and four of their last five. Brainerd beat the Rams 5-4 in overtime Jan. 9 at Roseau to earn the Orv Lundbohm traveling trophy.

"They had a tough loss against Moorhead (6-2)," Aus said. "There's no question they're going to come ready and then we're playing for a trophy. It would be nice to keep it in town for the summer."

"It's a big game, a game we need to win for our section seedings," Evans said. "We need to play as good as we did today, come out with the attitude that we've got to win."

 

Willmar 0 1 2 - 3

Brainerd 4 4 2 - 10

 

First period: B-Dylan McLain (Justin Marthaler) 5:40; B-Billy Kendall (Luke Johnson) 10:01; B-Jack Evans penalty shot 15:00; B-Josh Howieson (Happy Rivard) 15:38

Second period: W-Isaac Kobenia (Cooper Delp, Tanner Dahle) ppg :19; B-Luke Johnson (Marthaler) 2:01; B-Luke Wiskow (McLain) 10:21; B-Eric Stout (Mitch Andres) 12:49; B-Andy Muesing (Gavin Andres) shg 15:32

Third period: B-Matt Fischer (Evans, Sam Selisker) :52; W-Sawyer Delp (Nate Ackerman) 8:05; W-Kobenia (Cooper Delp, Grant Duininick) ppg 10:27; B-Wiskow 11:15

Shots on goal: Brd 17-10-7-34, W 4-5-7-16

Goalies: Brd-James Engen (13 saves); W-Caden Johnson (24 saves).

 

MIKE BIALKA may be reached at mike.bialka@brainerddispatch.com or 218-855-5861. Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/bertsballpark .

Related Topics: BRAINERD WARRIORS
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