The mighty Moose have had a winning season against tough competition.
But that changed on Friday, Jan 3, in a 6-2 Monticello loss to 7th-ranked Little Falls at Moose Sherritt Ice Arena.
Head coach, Eric Nelson Expected a physical game, and a physical game is what the Moose and Flyers produced.
“We’ve been super physical in practice coming into this game,” Coach Nelson said.
The first period was balanced on both ends.
The Moose’s Galvin Brooks touched net first with a shorthanded goal assisted by Brian Cornelius to put Monticello on top 1-0 three minutes into the game.
Two minutes later, Little Falls came back with two quick goals making it 2-1 with 12:49 left in the first period.
Monticello’s Wilson Dahlheimer tied the game at 2-2 with 7:45 left on the clock.
Little Falls had a quick answer to Dahlheimer’s goal, beating Moose goalie Nash Wilson for a goal about a minute later.
The Flyers led 3-2 after one period.
The Moose entered the second period hoping to make the most of their shots on goal.
“We were getting pucks to the net,” Coach Nelson said. “We were getting second and third chances, so those rebounds were what made us successful in the first period.”
But it was Little Falls, not Monticello, that would get the lone goal of the second period to take a 4-2 lead.
Coming into the third period, the Moose looked frustrated, but they tried to gear that towards taking the lead.
“You just have to stay positive,” Coach Nelson said.
The Moose continued to be aggressive on offense in the third period, but the puck wouldn’t get past the Little Falls goalie..
Little Falls added two more goals in the final period to ice its 6-2 win – one off a power play and another when Monti goalie Nash Wilson was pulled from the net to add another offensive player.
“We played a good game,” Coach Nelson said. “I don’t think the score was indicative of the game, so they just have to believe and we’ll keep plugging on.”
Wilson guarded the net for all but 23 seconds of the game and had 34 saves.
The Monticello hockey team travels to North Branch tonight for a conference game at 7 p.m.
Reach Jessie Meyen at firstname.lastname@example.org