skip navigation

The Sabres Advance in D6

By frederick61, 02/19/13, 1:45PM CST


Shakopee’s #5 Hunter Jacobs’ shot from the top of the slot is tipped and redirected under the goalies right arm into the net. Jacob’s scored the winning goal putting the Sabres up 2-0 five minutes into the third period

The D6 peewee A playoffs continued last night at the Chaska Community Center with two win or go home games.  The #5 seeded Shakopee A Sabres beat the #4 seeded and host Chaska A Hawks in a tight nail biter 3-1 in the first game in front an enthusiastic home crowd. 

It was one of the most fun games to see in the district playoffs this year.  The game was not settled until the Sabres’ Luke Spanier scored an empty netter with less than 30 seconds left on the clock.

The game started slow.  It was played up tempo, but neither team mounted any sustained attack.  There were few shots on goal in the opening minutes.  The Hawks were getting some pressure at the 10 minute mark, but could not beat the bigger Sabre defensemen down low around the net.  As a result they were not getting the good shot.

The Sabres were not succeeding either.  They would gain control of the puck in the Chaska zone and try to power the puck from above the slot area on to the net.  The Hawk defenders took that play away from the Sabres by blocking the shots.  In one 30 second interval; a single Sabre defenseman had 4 hard shots from the right point, but only one shot got through the Chaska forwards and that one missed the net.

The Sabre’s scored halfway through the period when Evan Holm picked the puck up inside his blue line and beat the Hawk defender trying to hold the point.  Holm skated through another Hawk and crossed into the Hawks’ zone at the center blue line; he moved left and beat the Chaska goalie on a hard shot from the left face off circle.

Shakopee led 1-0.  The Sabres’ Hunter Jacobs got the assist.

Just as the Sabres started to gain the upper hand in the game, controlling the puck after that score;  Chaska came back and started to knock the Sabre forwards off the puck.  It resulted in the Hawks applying tremendous pressure on the Sabre net forcing their goalie Cole Geyen to make some big stops.

The first period ended 1-0.

After finishing well in the first period, the Hawks came out flat in the second period and were thoroughly dominated by the Sabres.  The Sabres pinned the Hawks to their zone for minutes at a time.  The Hawks could not skate or pass to breakout.  They could get only a few seconds of relief when they managed to get the puck across their blue line.

It was the Sabre defense men that caged the Hawks in the Chaska zone.  They worked as team countering the other Shakopee defenseman’s play.  It was like two fighter airplanes with one flying wing while the first fighter engaged in action.  Their play resulted in the Hawks playing most of the second period in their zone.

The Sabres problem was a combination of the Hawk defensemen down low and the Hawk goalie Justin Bach.  What the defensemen couldn’t stop, Bach did.

A Sabre slashing penalty finally gave the Hawks some relief, but they could not get their power play organized.  Shakopee killed the penalty and returned to the attack.

Aided by two Hawk penalties late in the second period, the attack continued.  Bach continued to make the great plays.  The second period ended with the Sabres still leading by a goal 1-0.  The shots on goal after the first period favored Chaska 7-6; after the second period was played, the shots on goal favored Shakopee 20-9.

The third period was a “doosey”!

Shakopee opened the period playing conservatively.  They kept their defense and forwards back, playing more in the neutral zone and it worked until the Sabres scored.  The Hawks had freedom to move the puck out of their zone, but they could not break through the Sabre barrier in neutral ice.

Chaska became frustrated chasing the puck to the end boards and getting stifled in the neutral zone.  At the 12 minute mark, the Sabres caught the Hawk defense too far forward.  It resulted in a goal.

With 12 minutes left in the game, the Sabre’s defense man, Jacob Hunter, took a loose puck into the top of the slot in the Hawks’ zone and fired a hard shot at the Hawk net.  The Hawk defense got caught high.  A Sabre forward had slipped behind them low in the slot.  He slightly re-directed the puck and instead hitting the goalie square on, the puck hit just under the goalie’s right arm and slowly bounced into the net as Bach desperately tried to stop it.

It was a good play by all, but the Sabres led 2-0.

Then the Sabres began to give the Hawks more ice.  Instead of defending the red line, they were defending their zone.  The Hawks with room to maneuver and started to launch attacks.  At the six minute mark, a Hawk shot on net resulted in a rebound at the Sabre goalie’s skates.  The Hawks, Jacob Maus, powered the puck past the Sabre goalie to cut the Shakopee lead to 2-1.

The Sabres still remained in a defensive mode, moving a forward back to play a three man defense to stop the Chaska rushes.  They failed.  Chaska had a number of good scoring attempts in the last minutes of the game including two point blank shots from the top of the crease in the last minute of play.  Shakopee’s goalie Geyen made the stops.

And the crowd roared with each Hawk shot.

With less than 30 seconds on the clock, Luke Spanier scored the empty net goalie and the Shakopee bench erupted.  It was not baseball time for the Sabres anymore.  They won 3-1.

The Sabres will play the #1 seeded and NOW ranked #1 Edina A team Wednesday at Chaska.  It will be a tough game for the Sabres, but it will not be a loser goes home game.  The odds have improved on the Sabres making it to Wakota to play in the East Peewee A Regional tourney.

For Chaska A, they have had a good year.  At the Super Rink tourney at Thanksgiving, the Hawks lost a tough 2-1 overtime to Champlin Park, lost big to Mounds View 6-0, and had to settle for a seventh place win 3-1 over Andover A.  The Hawks ended the season showing they are not a team that plays for seventh place.

Recent MN YHH News