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Saturday Scores: Bighorns start the season with two wins

September 9, 2018

Hunter Pierce helped the Helena Bighorns to two road wins to open the 2018-19 season this weekend.

Saturday Box Scores

Bozeman 13 @ Butte 0 - Six different players notched goals, including two with hat-tricks and five with multiple tallies, as the Bozeman Icedogs romped to a 13-0 victory over the Butte Cobras in Butte, MT Saturday night. Bozeman netminder AJ Ruskowski faced down all 30 shots that came his way to earn his first shutout of the season, while Butte goaltender Nate Merriman suffered the loss despite stopping a stunning 81 of 94 shots against. Wyatt Burrell, Hazen McKay and Nash Pine each struck in the first period for the Icedogs, with Burrell and McKay assisting on each others' markers. The trio scored a goal apiece in the second period as well, bookended by a brace from Isaac Smoldon to stretch Bozeman's lead to 8-0 after two. Smoldon and Pine then lit the lamp in the final frame to cap off their hat tricks, in addition to a pair scored by Dominic Canic and another goal by Adam Franklin. 
 
Peoria 3 @ Milwaukee 6 - The second verse was the same as the first, as the Milwaukee Power dropped the Peoria Mustangs in the latter half of their back-to-back contests this weekend, this time by a 6-3 margin. Maris Graudins nabbed a pair of goals, while Jake Berry and Ben Beversdorf each posted a goal and an assist as the trio led the Power to victory. Beversdorf and Maudins scored in the opening period, sandwiching Blake Finley's goal for Peoria as the Power skated to a 2-1 advantage at the break. The teams then netted two goals apiece in the second stanza, with Graudins and Evan Mason tallying for Milwaukee before Austin Keil and Jaycob Bland responded for Peoria. The Power iced the win, however, with another two strikes in the final frame from Beversdorf and Berry. Milwaukee netminder picked up his second win in as many outings with 26 saves on 29 shots. 
 
Helena 4 @ Missoula 2 - Elliott Plourde and Nicholas Noel each found twine in the third period to break a 2-2 deadlock and push the Helena Bighorns to a 4-2 win over the Missoula Jr. Bruins Saturday night. Noel was one of three Bighorns players to notch multiple points, joined by Luc Cross (2a) and Kaden Lindberg (1g,2a). The two sides traded goals for two periods before Helena took control in the third. Noel notched his first of the evening to start the scoring midway through the first period, only to have his effort cancelled out by Missoula's Kyler Fullerton. The second period saw more of the same, this time with the Jr. Bruins taking the lead behind Henry McDougall's first of the season, but Lindberg answered just 22 seconds later to set up the Bighorns' big third period. Helena's Alexander Rogers stonewalled 30 of 32 pucks to earn the win, while Missoula's Billy Yoder turned aside 43 of 46 in the opposite crease. 
 
Long Beach 7 @ Maine 6 (OT) - Jason Gratz scored for the Maine Wild with just 1:22 remaining in regulation time to force overtime, but Noah Carlock snatched the win with a goal at 4:26 of extra time to help the Long Beach Sharks hold off the Wild 7-6 in a high-scoring affair on Saturday night. Carlock starred with a goal and an assist on the night, while Long Beach netminder Ryan Cortez stood strong with a 36-save performance between the pipes. Michael Walsh and Dino Mukovox put the Sharks ahead early, but Maine responded with two goals of their own from Regan Wintle and Chandler Bilodeau before the intermission. Long Beach then stormed back with another two tallies in the sandwich stanza by Richard Frosch and Gabriel Tesla, but Maine potted three more goals by Samuel Hale, Luke Church and Jason Cote to head into the third with a 5-4 lead. The Sharks then took the lead once more on the back of goals from Samuel Willis and Jackson Wellmeyer in the final frame before Gratz's late strike forced OT. 
 
Cape Cod 2 @ Niagara Falls 5 - The Niagara Falls Powerhawks finished strong, outscoring the Cape Cod Islanders 4-1 in the final 40 minutes to take a 5-2 victory at Hyde Park Ice Pavilion Saturday night. Evan Shanley and Dominic Cappella paced the Powerhawks' attack, each netting a goal and an assist, while Brendan Heayden starred for Cape Cod with two goals on the night. Niagara Falls' Matthew Schemelia and Cape Cod's Heayden each lit the lamp in the first period, but Shanley's second-period strike snapped the deadlock for good. Cam Orzechowski scored the eventual game-winner early in the third, and despite Heayden netting his second of the game just over a minute later, the Powerhawks posted two more tallies from Cappella and Jake Pembleton to run out as 5-2 winners.
 
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