Just twenty-four hours after Santa made his holiday run, the Eagan Wildcats are looking for more presents under the tree. In this first game of the Premier Tournament the Wildcats take on Hopkins. And as fast as Santa's Sleigh is, so was the Wildcats ability to score. Just six seconds after the drop of the puck Senior Forward and Captain, Nick Sherek deflects in a pass from Junior Forward and Assistant Captain, Jonny Meiers and Senior Center and Captain, Keegan Johnson. Eight minutes later and on a power-play Senior Forward, Michael Beneke finds the back of the net assisted by Senior Defenseman, Matt Bergom to put the Wildcats up two to zero. And then just before the end of the first period a third goal is scored by the Wildcats Junior Defenseman, Aidan Byrne. Assists going to Johnson and Sherek. The First period comes to an end with five total penalties. Three on Eagan and two on Hopkins. Just the one score on the power-play by Eagan.
The second period was fairly even. Both teams scoring three goals each and a total of three penalties, two by Hopkins. No power-play goals. The best statistic of the second period was the hat-trick by Michael Beneke who had his third by nine minutes left in the period. At the end of the second period it's Eagan six and Hopkins three.
At the beginning of the third period the Wildcats could sense that Hopkins felt they had a chance. So just to remove any doubt, Johnson scores, assisted by Sherek and Bergom. Hopkins manages to sneak one past Manzella during the third period but the Wildcats get two more for insurance and win their first game of the tournament nine to four. Just two penalties that period, one for each team. Manzella gets the win and saves 14 of 18. Next game for the Wildcats will be game two of the tournament and they will face St. Paul Johnson tomorrow (12/27) at 5pm at Woog Arena.