Stillwater scored in the first minute of the opening period to take a 1-0 lead. The Stallion’s Michael Kaufman got the goal, TJ Sagissor got the assist. After that score, Stillwater pressured the Chaska goal over the next 6 minutes. The Stallion’s basically pinned Chaska in Chaska’s zone and would not let them out, at least, not for very long.
At the 6 minute mark, the Hawks escaped and gained control of the puck in Stillwater’s zone behind the net. An attempted pass toward the left boards was kicked by a Stillwater defender. The puck beat the Stillwater goalie between his left pads and the pipe. Chaska’s Patrick Newell got the unassisted goal to tie the score 1-1. Three minutes later, Chaska scored again. This time Spencer Smith got the goal, Karl Johnson and Colin Moser got the assists. Chaska led 2-1. Stillwater pressured the Hawks in the remaining minutes of the first period, but could not score. The Stallions looked ready to take over the game in the second period. They didn’t.
The second period opened with a Stillwater scoring in the first 30 seconds. The Stallion’s Mathew Stanton took the puck along the right end boards behind the net, beat the Stillwater defense, and cut in front of the net on the short side. Stanton banged the puck between the goalie’s skates and drifted backward looking for the rebound. There was none. Stillwater had tied the game 2-2. Kaufman got the assist. Ten seconds after that score, disaster struck the Stallions. They took a 2 minute elbowing penalty. Chaska set up in the power play and pummeled the Stillwater net, but could not get the good shot. The Stallions killed the elbow penalty and almost to the second the first penalty ended, drew another two minute penalty for hooking. Chaska tired a little on the second power play. Stillwater was able to clear the puck more often to relieve the pressure. But just as the hooking penalty was ending, Stillwater drew another 2 minute penalty and went back on the penalty kill for two more minutes. The third Chaska power play put real pressure on the Stillwater defense.
Stillwater killed the third penalty and just as it was ending drew a fourth penalty for hooking. Whether Chaska was too tired or Stillwater more determined, but the fourth power play was flat. The Stallions easily kept the puck out of their zone. This time when the penalty was over, Stillwater kept five forwards on the ice. For most of the second period, the Stallions had skated shorthanded. At full strength, the Stallions trapped the Hawks in their zone for most of the next two minutes. With one minute left in the period, they scored. The Stallion’s Brody Swanson got the goal, George Uppgren and Brett Kohanek got the assists. Stillwater took a 3-2 lead into the third period. The third period opened with Chaska scoring. Chaska broke into the Stillwater zone with a forward carrying the puck along the right boards. He snaked a pass through to Zach Anderson in the slot and behind the defense. Anderson soled into the goalie at the top of the crease, punched the puck through the goalie and went flying. It was the tying goal. Jack Pries and Johnny Sigurdson got the assists.
The crowd was now into the game and the two teams were flying. A Chaska penalty at the 10 minute mark barely slowed the game down. But after that goal, for the next 4 minutes, nobody got a shot on the net. At the 9 minute mark, Stillwater tried a long cross ice pass in front of the Chaska defense. The defenseman stepped up to intercept the slow moving puck at the center blue line when the puck took a weird hop and bounced over his stick onto Sigurdson’s stick. The Stallion carried the puck low to the right side and beat the Chaska goalie high in the left corner for the winning goal. It was a strange hop. That was the game. Chaska pressured the Stillwater net, but the Stallions defense stiffened. In the last three minutes, Stillwater played five forwards between the Chaska blue line and the red line and were successful in cutting off the Hawks from the Stillwater net. So the big game is tomorrow. Unbeaten Wayzata Navy will play the once beaten Stillwater Red and YHH will cover the game.