|2/5/2021 12:00:00 PM|
Wildcats roll over Princeton before shutting out St. Francis
Chisago Lakes 6, Princeton 2
Ryan Schmidt scored four goals and added an assist, and Nick Helland assisted on five goals – including all four of Schmidt’s – to lead the Wildcats to a 6-2 win over the toothless Princeton Tigers Tuesday, January 26 at Chisago Lakes Arena.
Schmidt had a hat trick, including a power play goal, by the end of the first period, and the Wildcats led 3-1. In addition to Helland’s assists, Blaine Klemz and Zach Walden each tallied an assist in the first period. Schmidt scored again with just over a minute to go in the second period, assisted by Helland and Walden, to make the score 4-2. Nick Overgaard scored with five minutes to go in the game, assisted by Schmidt and Helland, to effectively seal the win. Karston Edson scored a couple of minutes later, with Overgaard picking up the assist, to make the final score 6-2. The Wildcats outshot the Tigers 48-40 for the game. Wildcat goalie Max Wilmer was a rock in the net, stopping 38 of the 40 shots he faced to help his team to a comfortable margin of victory.
“We had real good individual performances by Ryan Schmidt and Nick Helland,” said Wildcat head coach Cory Lushanko. “Ryan is our most skilled player when it comes to shooting the puck. I think he gained a lot of confidence in this game and we are a much better team with a confident Ryan Schmidt. We need a couple of other skill players to step up, too. Blaine Klemz was our best overall player in this game. A lot of things he did went unnoticed on the stat sheets. Early in the season, we are still trying to figure out exactly how our lines are going to look. We have had a good start to the season, but we have a long way to go.”
Chisago Lakes 2, St, Francis 0
The Wildcats combined solid defense, timely goals by Karston Edson and Nik Jinks and goalie Max Wilmer’s first shutout of the season to beat the St. Francis Fighting Saints 2-0 Saturday, January 30 at Chisago Lakes Arena.
Just over seven minutes into the first period, Nik Jinks carried the puck around the back of the St. Francis net from left to right and backhanded it to Edson in front of the net. Edson jammed it home to put the Wildcats up 1-0. The Wildcats nearly added to their tally midway through the second period as Cam Stangl fired a shot on a breakaway and tried to jam in the rebound. But the Saints’ goalie protected the post well and denied the rebound attempt, keeping his team within one. The Wildcats doubled their lead with just 14 seconds left in the second period. Ben Jinks carried the puck down the left boards and sent a pass across to Ben Jinks on the right side of the ice near the St. Francis Blue line. Ben Jinks skated just inside the dot in the right circle and roofed a beautiful shot into the upper left corner of the net to make it 2-0. Wilmer and the Wildcat defensive effort did the rest. For some unknown reason, St. Francis decided not to pull their goalie until 40 seconds remained in the game, which is just a bit too late when you are facing a two-goal deficit.
The Wildcats outshot the Saints 38-20 for the game, and Wilmer stopped all 20 shots he faced to pick up the shutout. Wildcat head coach Cory Lushanko said “We pass the puck well and don’t take unnecessary chances. The strength of our team is defense and goaltending.”
The Wildcats (3-1-1) will play the Cambridge-Isanti Bluejackets tonight at 7 p.m. at Isanti Ice Arena. Next Tuesday, February 9, they will head to East Bethel Ice Arena for a rematch with the St. Francis Fighting Saints, also getting underway at 7 p.m.