Eagan edges out the Shakopee Sabers 2-1 on Saturday, February 1st. The Wildcats and Sabers played a scoreless first period at the Eagan Civic Center. In the second period, senior Max Meekin scored at 8:40 assisted by Tony Asta and Aiden White. Shakopee responded shortly thereafter to tie the game.
The third period was a true nail biter after the Wildcats lost Senior Captain Max Meekin to an injury. Jonny Meiers, once again, stepped up his play to contribute not only with the offensive lines but also defensively – tallying up almost twelve minutes of play in the third period.
The Wildcats pulled out a win against the Shakopee Sabers with Senior Cole Gibson scoring with 1:46 remaining in the third period. Gibson’s goal was assisted by Seniors Henry Reiff and Aiden Byrne. Derek Manzella had some amazing saves successfully defending off 18 shots on goal.
In what appears to be all too reminiscent from last year’s season, injuries are plaguing the Wildcat’s during the home stretch. The Wildcats lost Senior Luke Anderson following the January Rosemount game due to concussion. Anderson was a steady player and a leader on the Wildcat’s third line contributing 7 points in the first 16 games of the season. Anderson is not expected to return. Senior Henry Reiff described Luke Anderson as “[o]ne of the hardest workers on the team - pushing his team to the max.” Meekin sustained injuries during Saturday’s game. Meekin has been a huge contributor to the Wildcats not only in points, but also in leadership. Meekin serves as co-captain for the Wildcats. Following Saturday’s game, Meekin contributed 22 points in 20 games with 8 goals and 14 assists – averaging 1.1 points per game. Reiff described Meekin as being “[a] true leader on the ice” and having “[a] real presence in the locker room.” Meekin’s return status is uncertain at this time. The Wildcat’s experienced similar losses to injury last year – losing Seniors William Randall and Nick Sherek during the home stretch. Despite the losses, the team relied on each other, worked hard and battled to the section finals. Fans are expecting the same "never give up" approach. As the Wildcat's head into the final weeks of the season, the overall approach will need to be consistent with the words they have chosen to live by: Every Day Matters.