The goals rained down like hail for the Royals in their season opener on Thursday night. It was also Dave Brown’s first game as Rogers head coach.
Rogers (1-0, 1-0) defeated Anoka (0-2, 0-1) 8-1. The Royals scored four times in both the first period and the second.
Brown said Rogers fan came out to support the Royals in the season opener. Brown served as an assistant coach with Wayzata last season and won the Class 2A state championship with the Trojans in 2016.
“The boys responded to everything you could dream of as a high school athlete,” Brown said. “To come out and put on a show for your friends, your family, your community, it means a lot to the 20 kids in that room. As their coach, I cannot be more proud.”
The Royals opened the scoring at the 3:41 mark of the first period when a shot from the blue line by defenseman Jake Scharber beat Tornadoes goaltender Joe Moen.
Anoka tied the game at 9:27 of the first when forward Jack Novack’s wrist shot went past Rogers goaltender Patric Loeffler. The Royals took the lead for good at 14:03 of the first when forward Trey Frederickson beat Moen to make it 2-1. Rogers scored two more times in the first and led 4-1 at first intermission. Tornadoes goaltender Nate Simon replaced Moen in the second period after Moen allowed four goals on 15 shots.
Rogers scored four times in the second period and did not give Anoka any chance to come back in the game. When the buzzer sounded, Loeffler celebrated as if he was shooting with an arrow as the Royals shot down their first opponent of the Dave Brown era.
Brown said Rogers is committed to the fundamentals and little details of hockey.
“When you have six guys on the ice doing that, two things happen,” Brown said. “Everyone gets rewarded and your goalie is going to have success, too.”
Offensive Player of the Game
Frederickson scored twice and ignited the Royals offense on Saturday night. It was his first multi-goal game since Feb. 13, 2018 when he scored twice in Rogers’ 5-4 win over Champlin Park.
Defensive Player of the Game
Loeffler didn’t see much action on Thursday night, but he did stop 14 of 15 Tornadoes shots. It was Loeffler’s second career game in which he allowed one goal or less.
Rogers will face Buffalo tomorrow at 7 p.m. at Rogers Activity Center. It is Buffalo’s season opener. The Bison defeated the Royals twice during the 2018-19 regular season.