Varsity regular hockey season closes with shutout and conference title|
The turnout for Seniors Night at the Langlade County Multi-Purpose Building was grand. Antigo showed its fans a whole lot of love on the eve of Valentine’s Day with a physical 2-0 win over Mosinee.
The Red Robins completed its regular season with a final record of 21-1-2 in overall play and 13-1-0 in the Great Northern Conference, of which they are now the champions.
“It was a dogfight tonight. Tough, physical—we just fought really hard and got the win. I am proud of these guys,” Coach Matt Borneman commented after the game.
In his first season as head coach of the Red Robins, Borneman has a .950 win percentage with two non-factored ties to his credit. The team’s only loss to Northland Pines was eventually avenged, and is a potential rematch in the rapidly approaching postseason.
The physical play that marked Antigo’s defeat of Mosinee was definitely hard fought. Despite outshooting the Indians 14-4 in the first period, Mosinee continued to battle hard against the amped-up Robins.
For an Indians team that had won seven of its last 10 games, including a 3-1 win at Northland Pines on Jan. 24, Mosinee proved to be exceptionally tough opposition.
Hits were plentiful and the officials let the gentlemen play for most of the game. With only three minor penalties in the entire contest, Antigo received the first of the power play chances on the evening. It would prove to be beneficial.
With 5:10 remaining in the second period, Mosinee’s Wyatt Pufall was called for interference. With Antigo having the man advantage, 72 seconds later senior defenseman Matt Wolter pinched deep and lit up Indians’ goaltender Zach Bednar.
Assisted by another soon-to-be graduate Joe Kubacki and sophomore Alex Nagel, Wolter and Kubacki gave the term “Seniors Night” a connotation more than just bingo and an early bedtime.
Ironically outshot in the only period in which they scored, Robins’ net minder Ryan Schmidt was on his game. Facing 19 total shots, Schmidt finished his 2013-14 season with three consecutive shutouts.
The Robin coaching staff was proud to commend its junior goalie.
“(Schmidt) kept us on top in this one. He played an excellent game,” Borneman stated.
The second Antigo goal was the result of beautiful execution by defenseman Jackson Charlesworth and his tandem of underclassmen forwards.
Receiving a heads-up pass from Wickersheim, Charlesworth took the puck deep into the Indians’ zone along the near boards to just above the goal line.
With a Mosinee defenseman pressuring on him, Charlesworth passed across the top of the crease to a wide-open Nagel striking down the slot. The resulting goal with 14 seconds left in the third period would put it away for the Robins.
With the regular season over, a new chapter awaits the Robins in the playoffs. With a week to practice and strategize, coaches Borneman, Eric Schroeder and Corey Beaulieu await the winner of the WIAA Regional first round matchup of No. 10 Merrill and No. 7 Pacelli.
Antigo will resume play against the victor of that game next Thursday, February 20 at 7:00 p.m. at the Langlade County Multi-Purpose Building.
Mosinee at Antigo
Robins 2, Indians 0
At Langlade County Multi-Purpose Building
Thursday, Feb. 13 2014
AHS 0 2 0 — 2
MHS 0 0 0 — 0
AHS—13:02 Matt Wolter (Joe Kubacki, Alex Nagel) PP
AHS—16:46 Nagel (Jackson Charlesworth, Elijah Wickersheim) E
AHS: Ryan Schmidt 4 10 5 — 19
MHS:Zach Bednar 14 9 12 — 35
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