You don't need to go much further than the South Suburban Conference to find a couple of top 20 hockey teams in the state. That would be both Lakeville North and Rosemount. The Wildcats already took care of business against Lakeville North, so tonight they are looking to show their relevance against the Irish from Rosemount.
From the drop of the puck it was obvious that each team was posturing. Trying to apply heat while not making any costly mistakes. Eagan has been used to out-shooting their opponents in nearly each game this season. But not today as the Irish came out firing. But it's the Wildcats that would draw first blood. At six minutes into the first period, Senior Center, Will Heutmaker flips one up on the goalies back and it drops in the goal. The assist going to Senior Forward, Michael Beneke. And although there was plenty of action the remainder of the first period there were no penalties and no goals. There were however a good amount of shots. Seventeen to ten but in favor of the Irish.
The second period begins with the Wildcats up one to zero. Just as in the first period, the game is fast paced and Rosemount continues to dominate the shots on goal. And like the first period, and in that magical six minute mark, Junior Forward, Henry Reiff rips one past the Rosemount goal-tender. Assists going to Senior Forward, Cullen Myhre and Junior Center, Cole Gibson. Other than a few minor penalties in the period all you saw was a good fast paced hockey game. You could tell at the end of the period that Rosemount was getting a bit frustrated as they went in the box for roughing. So in the 2nd period the Irish once again out-shot the Wildcats ten to five. But on the scoreboard it's Wildcats two and the Irish zero.
As the third period begins you can feel the Irish pressing hard and just 30 seconds into the 3rd Rosemount gets on the board. The Wildcats stumble a bit and go in the box on two separate occasions during the period but are able to kill off the penalties without issue. The Wildcats seemed to settle in and get back to business. They score three unanswered goals to solidify the victory. The scoring went as follows:
* Senior Defenseman and Assistant Captain Max Meekin (short handed) - a nifty little breakaway and juked the goalie.
* Senior Forward and Captain, Nick Sherek - Assisted by Senior Center and Captain, Keegan Johnson and Junior Forward and Assistant Captain Jonny Meiers.
* Keegan Johnson, assisted by Sherek and Meiers
At the end of the third period the Irish show their frustration and go in the box for roughing. The horn sounds and the Wildcats have a convincing victory over the Irish five to one. The Wildcats are out-shot thirty-four to twenty-five. Between the pipes Manzella plays fantastic by allowing no power-play goals on four penalties and shutting down thirty-three of thirty-four shots. Manzella gets the win!! Next game for the Wildcats is their Stick-It-To-Cancer event on Saturday (1/12) at 7pm at the Eagan Civic Arena.