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Saturday Scores: Bobcats, Rebels, Wildcats snag 2-0 series leads

April 17, 2016

Michael Merulla had three goals, including both game-winners, in two wins over the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights this weekend.

Central Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: Brookings 3 @ Bismarck 5 (Bismarck leads best of 5 series, 2-0) – Aaron Herdt had a big night with two goals and an assist as the Bobcats jumped ahead 2-0 in the series with a 5-3 win in Bismarck in Game 2. Brookings got on the board first midway through the 1st period with a power play goal from Nick Ford. Bismarck would answer with three straight to take a 3-1 lead, which included two goals from Herdt and another from Willie Brown. Before the 2nd period was up, the Blizzard with draw to within one on a power play goal from Mikael Hakkarainen. Early in the 3rd period the Bobcats went back up by two goals on a tally from Oskars Batna. Ford scored his second later in the period to make the score 4-3, but an empty-net goal from Harrison Aide secured the win. Hunter Shepard made 28 saves in the win, while Josh Kuehmichel made 33 saves in the loss. Boxscore

Central Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: Austin 4 @ Minot 1 (Best of 5 series tied, 1-1) – The Bruins scored three power play goals on their way to a 4-1 win in Minot, which evened the best of five series, 1-1. It didn’t take long for Austin to get on the board as Jade Miller scored a power play goal just 1:27 into the game. Early in the 2nd period, Austin Rueschhoff scored on the power play to make it 2-0 and 10 minutes later Jacob Paganelli scored to make it 3-0. It wasn’t until three minutes remaining in the 3rd period that the Minotauros would finally get on the board as Grayson Gavin scored with three minutes to go. Zach Kennedy added a late goal for the Bruins to make it a 4-1 win. Kris Carlson made 29 saves in the win, while Gunner Rivers made 24 saves in the loss. Boxscore

South Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: Odessa 0 @ Wichita Falls 5 (Wichita Falls leads best of 5 series, 2-0) – It was all Wildcats from start to finish as Justin Kapelmaster stopped all 34 shots that came his way in a 5-0 shutout, which gave Wichita Falls a 2-0 lead in the series. It took just :50 seconds for the Wildcats to take the lead on a goal from Andre Pison. Two minutes later, it would be Nikita Litviak scoring, which ended the night for Odessa starting goalie Dean Shatzer. Later in the 1st period, a power play goal from Aleksi Poikola made the score 3-0.  The Wildcats added two more goals in the 2nd period as Nick Rosa and Garrett VanWyhe scored within a five minute span of one another. Shatzer ended up with nine saves in the loss, while Jon Flakne made 29 saves in a relief appearance. Boxscore

South Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: Topeka 2 @ Lone Star 1 (Best of 5 series tied, 1-1) – In the first overtime game of the 2016 NAHL Robertson Cup Playoffs, it took just over five minutes for the RoadRunners to capture the game-winning goal as they evened their series with the Brahmas thanks to a 2-1 win. Lone Star grabbed a 1-0 lead with an early 1st period goal from Carson Kelly. The RoadRunners would tie the game early in the 2nd period thanks to a power play goal from Luka Maver. In the overtime, a 3 on 2 rush led to a rebound chance by Topeka forward Quinn Preston, who buried the game-winner past Brahmas goalie Corbin Kaczperski. Topeka netminder Juho Niku made 28 saves in the win, while Kaczperski made 21 saves in the loss. Boxscore

East Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: Wilkes-Barre/Scranton 2 @ Aston 3 (Aston leads best of 5 series, 2-0) – For the second straight night, the Rebels brought home a 3-2 win over the Knights, only on Saturday, they needed three, 3rd period goals in just over a two-minute span to do it. Things were looking good for the Knights early as they took a 2-0 lead in the 1st period with goals from Blake Busch and Dorian Dawson. After a scoreless 2nd period, the Rebels exploded for three goals in a 2:19 span in the 3rd period to take a 3-2 lead as Kristofers Bindulis, Eric Carreras and Michael Merulla scored. Darion Hanson picked up the win in goal, making 19 saves, while Andrey Svistunov made 30 saves in the loss. Boxscore

Midwest Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: MN Wilderness 2 @ Janesville 1 (Best of 5 series tied, 1-1) – In a game that featured just 37 combined shots on goal, the defending champion Wilderness knotted up the series thanks to a 2-1 win in a defensive battle on Saturday. The Wilderness jumped ahead 1-0 midway through the 1st period on a goal from defenseman Janis Jaks. Midway through the 2nd period, the Jets tied the game thanks to a shorthanded goal from Dawson DiPietro. Just four minutes later, it would be the Wilderness who scored shorthanded as Casey Gilling netted the eventual game-winner. Luke Kania got the start and win in goal for Minnesota, making 17 saves, while Jack LaFontaine made 17 saves in the Jets loss. Boxscore

Midwest Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: Coulee Region 1 @ Fairbanks 2 (Best of 5 series tied, 1-1) – In a complete reversal of Game 1, the Fairbanks Ice Dogs scored five goals in the 2nd period on their way to a 6-1 win, which tied the best of 5 series with the Chill, 1-1. Game 3 of the series is in Fairbanks on Sunday, April 17th. After a scoreless 1st period, the Ice Dogs got on the board early in the 2nd period with a pair of goals from Todd Burgess and Cayden Cahill to take a 2-0 lead. The Chill drew to within one on a power play goal from Nico Luka, but then Ryner Gorowsky took over scoring a natural hat-trick in a five minute span to make the score 5-1 after two periods. Jakob Stridsberg added a 3rd period goal to make the final 6-1. Gavin Nieto made 27 saves in the win. Matiss Kivlenieks made 15 saves in the loss before being pulled in favor of Hunter Vorva, who made 13 saves. Boxscore

 
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