By Bill LaTour
With every road trip, you have some good and some bad. On the good side, the Mound Westonka High School boys hockey team earned one win in two attempts and provided a real challenge to the eighth-ranked team in the state. On the bad side, the White Hawks took way too many penalties (six against the Greenway Raiders on Nov. 24 and eight against the North Shore Storm on Nov. 25) while only going 2-12 with their own power play opportunities. Both facets of the game will need improvement if the White Hawks are to skate to their potential this season.
Game one versus the Raiders was a classic up and down the ice, fast-skating, hard-checking contest. At the final buzzer, it was the Raiders earning a 5-3 victory.
Game 1 highlights:
- White Hawk goals: senior Hank Nagel (2) and senior Jack LaTour (1)
- White Hawks outshot the Raiders 29-22
In game two against the Storm, it was evident from the first shift that the White Hawks were determined to earn a split on the road trip. Constant pressure and a relentless forecheck earned them a decisive 4-1 victory, and the game really was not that close.
Game 2 highlights:
- White Hawks goals: senior Michael Lindell (2) and Nagel (1)
- Senior Brady Aufderheide recorded the first shorthanded goal of the season
- Junior goaltender Noah Coley saved 15 of 16 shots on goal
- White Hawks outshot the Storm 35-16
The White Hawks JV team skated hard, checked harder and earned two solid victories during the road trip north.
The White Hawks home opener is Saturday, Dec. 2, at Thaler Arena with the JV at 1 p.m. and the varsity at 3 p.m. Come out and cheer your team to victory on Salt Sale Appreciation Day!
Coaches Corner with Jake Hindermann:
The trip north was a great experience. The boys were subjected to the northern game and a tradition-rich region of Minnesota, where hockey is a rite of passage to all the communities’ youth. Greenway was a formidable opponent and deserves the statewide respect they are given; but to us there are no moral victories, and we left in defeat feeling we should have won the game. Penalties were the difference. Saturday was a revenge game for us, as we felt we had something to prove. North Shore didn’t stand a chance, as we dominated in all phases of the game, outshooting them 2-1 and winning the puck possession at a 3-1 rate. We are looking forward to a great week of practice, as we have five in a row in preparation for our home opener against New Ulm next Saturday!