Triple Threat? No Sweat.
Mullets Earn Five Points at Home after Thanksgiving Break
By: Dan Bradley
FOREST LAKE -- If there’s one thing I’ve learned covering Junior Hockey, it’s that the boys sure know how to eat. While the Minnesota Mullets more than likely stuffed themselves over Thanksgiving Break, taking in turkey and enjoying time with family and friends, the team came back hungry with a three-game homestand looming. A great week of practice set the tone as the boys prepared for a tripleheader, facing three different opponents in three days.
Friday night, the Mullets played host to the Steele County Blades, while also holding Youth Appreciation Weekend. In the last game before Break, Steele County managed to pull off a shootout win in Owatonna, edging the Mullies 3-2. With the mindset of “unfinished business,” puck drop saw a dominant performance for Minnesota. Following a first period where both teams knocked the proverbial rust off, the Mullets took full command of the second period. Cooper Hoheisel scored a pair of goals (even strength and shorthanded), and Nate Holm added another shorthanded tally for a 3-0 score after two periods. Minnesota kept their foot on the gas in the third, as Griffin Medina stretched the lead with another goal. Hoheisel went on to complete the hat trick with the third shorthanded goal for the Mullies. Jack Bostedt stopped all 14 Blades shots, and earned his second shutout of the season. Final Score: Minnesota Mullets - 5, Steele County Blades - 0.
STARS OF THE GAME:
1. Cooper Hoheisel (3G, 2SHG)
2. Nate Holm (1G, 1A, SHG)
3. Griffin Medina (1G)
Riding high after a statement win, the Mullets rolled into the rink Saturday for afternoon contest against the Hudson Havoc. The 1:00PM start time seemed to have the Mullets a half-step behind in the first period, and the Havoc took advantage as Mason Trowbridge scored his sixth of the season. As the Mullets have done all year, they tightened the focus in the second period. Following Friday night’s strong short-handed showing, Saturday’s game was all about the power play. Tyler Kulas scored his fourth goal of the year on the power play just 11 seconds into the second period. Dylan Hullaby scored his second of the season as well, and Dalton L’Allier, returning to action for the first time in several weeks following an upper-body injury, scored another power play marker, as the Mullets took a 3-1 lead into the dressing room after two. Despite a strong surge from the Havoc in the third, Jack Bostedt stood tall in net once again, earning his 10th win of the year and leading the Mullets to a 3-1 victory. The loss for Hudson was their 15th loss in a row, with their last division win being the season opener. The Mullets moved to 13-8-1 on the season, at the time one point behind the Wisconsin Rapids RiverKings for third-place in the Midwest-West Division.
STARS OF THE GAME:
1. Jack Bostedt (28 SV, 1GA)
2. Dylan Hullaby (1G, GWG)
3. Tyler Kulas/Dalton L’Allier (each with 1 PPG)
In almost a complete reversal of the script from Saturday afternoon, the first-place Minnesota Blue Ox brought their 14-game win streak to Lichtscheidl Arena on Sunday night. With two of the top goaltenders in the division between the pipes, Brady Boudreau (10-1-0, 2.47GAA, 89.4%) and Jack Bostedt (10-4-1, 2.62 GAA, 89.9%) entered the game tied for the division lead in Goaltender Wins. While many were anticipating a goaltender duel, it was the offense who would take center stage. Kristian Kause and Orlando Scherz drew first blood for the Blue Ox, but Nate Holm and Jon Hansen answered late in the first period to tie the game 2-2. The Blue Ox would take another two-goal lead in the second, with Oskari Halme and Kause would strike again before Joe Brophy cut the lead to one. Another late-period goal scored by Halme on the power play set up another two-goal lead, and the Blue Ox led 5-3 at the end of the second period.
But you know what they say about two-goal leads…
Cooper Hoheisel sparked the Mullets with a goal 23 seconds into the third. Feeling the pressure of a close game against the first-place Blue Ox, Nolan Frederick rose to the occasion and scored on the power play to tie the game 5-5 and force overtime. After a Mullet penalty to start overtime (which came as no surprise with the teams combining for 48 penalty minutes throughout the game), the Blue Ox did what they do best, and despite a valiant penalty kill, Oskari Halme scored while the teams were skating 4-on-4 for the hat trick. Final Score: Minnesota Blue Ox - 6, Minnesota Mullets - 5, in OT.
STARS OF THE GAME:
1. Oskari Halme (3G, 1A, GWG)
2. Jon Hansen (1G, 2A, PPG)
3. Kristian Kause (2G, 1A)
On Sunday, December 10, the Mullets will be holding a Toys for Tots drive at the rink. On Friday, December 15th, the Mullets will have a “Teddy Bear Toss” and “Ugly Christmas Sweater Night.” Stay tuned to the Mullets Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pg/MulletsJrHockey/ for more updates.