West Fargo Sheyenne scores in the fifth round of the shootout to come away with the victory over Devils Lake
The Devils Lake boys hockey game against West Fargo Sheyenne was the perfect storm.
The Mustangs came into Thursday’s contest winless and embarrassed after a 17-0 loss Tuesday night against Grand Forks Central. The Firebirds knew this as well.
“They saw the Sheyenne-Central game and didn’t think they needed to put in much effort,” said Firebirds head coach Jens Stokke.
And then the storm hit.
Kamden Coles’ goal in the fifth shootout round gave the Mustangs the 2-1 win over Devils Lake from Burdick Arena and spoiled another masterful game at net for senior Reegan Reule.
“My goalie again did his part. He was exceptional on the backside,” Stokke said about Reule’s 28 saves. “I’m concerned about my forwards.
“We had issues in Minot with my forwards not forechecking. We had issues in Grafton with them not forechecking and against Sheyenne, we got the same thing.”
In those two previous games, the Firebirds (3-2) split, losing to Minot 2-0 before winning Tuesday against Grafton 4-3. About Thursday’s game, Stokke said it came down to what’s in their chest.
“I just don’t think their heart was in it.”
The game was scoreless into the third period before the Mustangs got on the board first, scoring during a power play when Aaron Johnson was sent to the box for slashing. Forward Kade Peterson’s shot whizzed by Reule’s left shoulder and Sheyenne led 1-0.
A little over two minutes later, John Rutten took an assist from Zach Boren and scored against Sheyenne’s goaltender Cole Nissen. The game remained deadlocked all the way through both the end of regulation and the eight minute overtime that set up the shootout round.
The first three shooters for the Mustangs, Quade Peters, Kole Fitzpatrick and Peterson, were all stopped by Reule. Blaze’s Ackerland’s shot went wide. For the Firebirds, Quentin Stubbe’s shot was saved by Nissen. Camden Schwab’s attempt was high and Nissen saved shots by Boren and Jeremiah Hill to set up the fifth round.
Cole sneaked his shot past Reule’s left leg, right inside the post. And with a chance to extend the shootout, Firebirds Aiden Moser missed ending the game.
Both teams had scoring opportunities in the third period. Reule’s save on a two-on-one break in the 12th minute kept the Mustangs (1-3) off the board and then Kai Trudeau’s shot from right in front of the net sailed wide thwarting another scoring chance.
In the 15th minute, Carter Schwabb missed on a break away that could have given the Firebirds the go ahead score.
West Fargo Sheyenne at Devils Lake Summary
WF Sheyenne 0 0 1 0 — 1 Devils Lake 0 0 1 0 — 1
*West Fargo Sheyenne wins shootout 1-0*
Third period_1, Sheyenne, Peterson 3 (Freije, Ackerland), 1:43. 2, Devils Lake, Rutten 3 (Boren), 3:47. Shots on goal_Sheyenne 7-9-8-5_26. Devils Lake 9-7-6-6_28.
Power-play Opportunities_Sheyenne 1 of 2; Devils Lake 0 of 5.
Goalies_Sheyenne, Nissen 9-7-5-6 (28 shots-27 saves). Devils Lake, Reule 7-9-7-5 (29 shots-28 saves).
Chris Harris can be reached at email@example.com and on Twitter: @ChrisHarris_DLJ