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Competition tight on Day 2 of NAHL Showcase

September 20, 2019

Some of the notable performances on Thursday came from 17-year-old Minnesota Wilderness forward Brady Hunter, Odessa goalie Zach Stern, and New Jersey forward Kyler Head.

Now in its 17th season, the North American Hockey League (NAHL) Showcase is truly the Greatest Show on Ice. The annual event continues on Friday, September 20th with Day 3 and runs from September 18-21, 2019, at the Super Rink in Blaine, Minnesota.
 
All 26 NAHL teams will play four regular-season games at the Showcase, which is one of hockey's most prominent and popular events of the entire season and has become the 'Greatest Show on Ice.'
 
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Thursday was an action-packed day and featured some very close games. 9 of the 13 contests were decided by two goals or less. Over 280+ NCAA and NHL scouts have checked in during the first two days of the event.
 
Thursday's Box Scores
 
Watch: Recap of Day 2 action with Kirsten Krull

Maine 5 vs. New Mexico 2 – Maine forward Makem Demers scored twice to lead the Nordiques to a 5-2 win over New Mexico in a battle of the NAHL’s two newest teams to open up Day 2 of the NAHL Showcase. Demers opened the scoring just over three minutes into the game. The Ice Wolves answered with a goal from Brandt Pedersen late in the period, but just :21 seconds later, the Nordiques gained the lead back with a goal from Tyler Harvey. Demers added his second goal of the game in the 2nd period to make it 3-1. New Mexico cut the lead to 3-2 early in the 3rd period on a goal from Keenan Johnson, but the Nordiques put the game away with two goals later in the 3rd period from Stefan Owens and Samuel Harris. Maine goalie Avery Sturtz made 20 saves in the win, while Henrik Laursen made 20 saves in the loss.
 
Odessa 1 vs. Northeast 0 – Odessa goaltender Zach Stern stopped all 32 shots that came his way to post a shutout in his NAHL debut as the Jackalopes edged the Generals, 1-0 on Day 2 of the NAHL Showcase. The lone goal of the game came off the stick of Jackalopes forward Jan Blasko midway through the 1st period on the power play. Northeast Generals goalie Joey Stanizzi played well in the loss, stopping 25 of 26 shots, but the Generals went scoreless for the second straight game.
 
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton 3 vs. Aberdeen 2 (OT) – Aberdeen jumped ahead 1-0 with a goal just over a minute into the game from Jakub Breault. The Knights answered back later in the 1st period on a goal from Christopher Rubenach to tie the game at 1-1. The Knights took their first lead of the game as Shane Murphy scored his first goal of the season midway through the 2nd period. However, the Wings were able to tie the game as Natan Vertes scored on a nice wrist shot for his 4th goal of the NAHL Showcase. In the overtime, Caydon Meyer scored the game-winner through traffic to keep the Knights record perfect on the season. Alex Contey picked up the win in goal, making 16 saves, while Henry Welsch made 21 saves in the OT loss.

Amarillo 2 vs. Minot 1 (OT) – The Amarillo Bulls picked up their second win in as many days at the NAHL Showcase as they edged Minot in overtime, 2-1. Matt Allen scored his second goal of the season to get the Bulls scoring started just :13 seconds into the game. Minot was able to tie things up midway through the 2nd period as Isak Dahlin scored his first goal of the season to make it 1-1. After a scoreless 3rd period, the Bulls netted the game-winner in overtime as defenseman Noah Carlin blocked a shot, outraced his defender on a breakaway and scored a goal as he was tripped to the ice. Bulls goalie Max Gutjahr made 14 saves in the win, while Minot goalie Ben Garrity made 24 saves in the OT loss.
 
Corpus Christi 3 vs. Chippewa 1 – The IceRays picked up their second win of the NAHL Showcase as they defeated the Chippewa Steel, 3-1. The teams traded goals in the 2nd period after a scoreless 1st period as Kyle Schroeder scored for the IceRays and Jacob Dirks answered back for the Steel for his 4th goal of the season. The IceRays took control in the 3rd period as Ryan Coughlin scored on the power play to make it 2-1 and then Erik Bargholtz added an empty-net goal to make it a 3-1 final. Cal Sandquist made 12 saves to pick up the win in his NAHL debut, while Trent Burnham made 26 saves in the loss. 
 
MN Wilderness 5 vs. Springfield 1 – 17-year-old forward Brady Hunter had two goals and an assist to lead the Wilderness to their first win of the season thanks to a 5-1 win over the Jr. Blues on Day 2 of the NAHL Showcase. Hunter opened the scoring in the final seconds of the 1st period to make it 1-0. The Jr. Blues quickly tied the game early in the 2nd period as Max Osborne scored just :27 seconds into the middle frame. However, from there, it was all Wilderness as they added two more goals in the 2nd period from Ryan Nelson and Ryan Antonakis. Tyler Watkins and Hunter added 3rd period goals to secure the 5-1 win. Wilderness goalie Ryan Ouellette made 25 saves in the win, while Atticus Kelly made 13 saves in the loss.
 
Fairbanks 2 vs. Maryland 0 – Ice Dogs goalie and NAPHL grad Austin Ryman posted a 12-save shutout in his NAHL debut as Fairbanks picked up their first win of the 2019-20 season with a 2-0 blanking of the Maryland Black Bears. The Ice Dogs opened the scoring midway through the 2nd period as Jasper Lester scored his first goal of the season. In the 3rd period, Mason Plante added an insurance goal for the 2-0 win. Black Bears goalie Andrew Takacs played well in the loss, making 40 saves.
 
New Jersey 3 vs. Shreveport 1 – Titans goalie Patrick Pugliese made 28 saves and forward Kyler Head had a goal and an assist as New Jersey stayed perfect on the season and perfect at the NAHL Showcase by knocking off the previously unbeaten Shreveport Mudbugs, 3-1. Things looked good early for Shreveport, who got a goal in the 1st period from Warren Natyshak. However, the Titans responded with two goals before the period was done to take a 2-1 lead, which included goals from Mac Wiseman and Mitch Machlitt. Early in the 2nd period, Head gave the Titans more insurance with a clever bank shot goal from the goal line. Richie Parent took the loss in goal for the Mudbugs, making 22 saves.
 
St. Cloud 5 vs. Topeka 2 – On the strength of a three-goal 1st period, the St. Cloud Blizzard picked up a 5-2 win over the Topeka Pilots on Day 2 of the NAHL Showcase. The Blizzard scored three goals in a 14-minute span to open the game, which included goals from Derek Roberts, Bud Winter, and Luke Aquaro. The Pilots responded early in the 2nd period with two goals just :26 seconds apart as Nick Nardecchia and Michael Muschitiello scored back-to-back goals. However, the Blizzard weathered the storm and made it 4-2 later in the period with a goal from Ben Ward, which was his 3rd of the event. Roberts tacked on an insurance goal late in the 3rd period to make it a 5-2 final. Britt League made 19 saves in the win, while Jakub Dobes made 16 saves in the loss.
 
MN Magicians 2 vs. Jamestown 1 – The Magicians picked up their first win of the 2019-20 season in thrilling fashion on Day 2 of the NAHL Showcase as they scored in the game’s final seconds to pick up a 2-1 win over the Jamestown Rebels. It took the Rebels just four minutes to score the game’s first goal as Kasyn Kruse lit the lamp for his first goal of the season. Less than two minutes later, the Magicians tied the game on a goal from Jake Hale. Late in the 3rd period, the Magicians had one final rush as they threw the puck on net and Lucus Kanta was there to pick up the rebound and pot home the game-winner with just :04 seconds left in regulation. David Tomeo made 20 saves in the Magicians win, while Noah West made 26 saves in the losing effort for the Rebels.
 
Johnstown 3 vs. Bismarck 2 (SO) – The Johnstown Tomahawks picked up their first win of the 2019-20 season in dramatic fashion as they come from behind to defeat the Bismarck Bobcats in a shootout, 3-2. Johnstown opened the scoring with a 1st period goal from Christian Gorscak. The Bobcats responded with two straight goals to take a 2-1 lead as Will Hillman and Grant Johnson lit the lamp. With just 1:20 remaining in regulation, the Tomahawks tied the game at 2-2 as Carson Gallagher scored his first goal of the season. In the overtime, Bismarck scored, but a player was ruled in the crease. In the shootout, Johnstown captain Chris Trouba netted the game-winner. Johnstown goalie Alex Tracy made 38 saves in the win, while Andrew Miller made 20 saves in the shootout loss.

Lone Star 3 vs. Kenai River 2 (OT) – The Brahmas scored three straight goals to erase a 2-0 deficit and come from behind to defeat the Brown Bears, 3-2 in overtime on Day 2 of the Showcase. Things were looking good for Kenai River early as they jumped out to a 2-0 lead with 1st period goals from Porter Schachle and Theo Thrun. Lone Star mounted their comeback late in the 2nd period with a goal from Jack Collins, then tied the game midway through the 3rd period on a goal from Joey Baez. In the overtime, forward Andrew DeCarlo fired a wrist shot on a 1-on-1 that beat Brown Bears netminder CJ Hapward for the game-winner. Brahmas goalie Ludvig Persson made 21 saves in the win, while Hapward made 32 saves in the OT loss.
 
Janesville 4 vs. Austin 0 – Janesville Jets goalie Grant Riley stopped all 16 shots that came his way for his first career NAHL win and shutout as the Jets rolled to another shutout win on Day 2 of the Showcase thanks to a 4-0 win over the Austin Bruins. The Jets have now outscored their opponents 9-0 in the event. Four different players scored for Janesville, which included Parker Lindauer in the 1st period, Jack Rhode and Max Itagaki in the 2nd period and Nick Brown in the 3rd period. Bruins goalie Tyler Shea made 16 saves in the loss.
 
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