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Friday Finals: Five teams sweep to advance to Division Finals

April 29, 2023

Austin Salani scored all three goals for the Bruins in their Game 3 win on Friday as they advanced to the Central Finals.

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Central Division Semi-Finals, Game 3: Aberdeen 0 @ St. Cloud 3 (St. Cloud wins series, 3-0) – Ethan Dahlmeir put an exclamation point on the series with his second shutout of the playoffs as he made 25 saves in a 3-0 win in Game 3 as the Norsemen swept the Wings. St. Cloud opened the scoring in the 1st period with a goal from Carter Bradley, which would stand as the game-winner. In the 3rd period, Lucca Munoz scored to make it 2-0 and Blake Perbix added an empty-netter to make it a 3-0 final. Wings goalie Cole Moore made 18 saves in the loss.

Central Division Semi-Finals, Game 3: Austin 3 @ Minot 0 (Austin wins series, 3-0) – Austin Salani had a hat-trick, scoring all three Bruins goals and Trent Wiemken posted a 20-save shutout as the Bruins advanced to the Central Division Finals with a 3-0 win in Game 3 and series sweep over the Minotauros. After a scoreless 1st period, Salani would score two goals in the 2nd period just 1:12 apart with Jack Malinski picking up assists on both goals. Salani would then add an empty-net goal in the 3rd period to complete the hat-trick, win, and sweep. Minot goalie Noah Rupprecht made 19 saves in his final NAHL game.

Midwest Division Semi-Finals, Game 3: Wisconsin 4 @ Chippewa 2 (Wisconsin wins series, 3-0) – The top-seeded Windigo advanced to the Midwest Division Finals thank to a 4-2 win in Chippewa in Game 3, which completed a three-game sweep. Wisconsin went up 1-0 in the 1st period with a goal from Victor Widlund. The Steel would take a 2-1 lead in the 2nd period with two quick goals from Matthew Brille and Kazumo Sasaki. The Windigo tied the game late in the period on a goal from Everett Pietila. In the 3rd period, Pietila would strike again with the eventual game-winning goal to make it 3-2. Will Schumacher added an empty-net goal to secure the win and the sweep. Maxwell Beckford made 32 saves in the win, while Adam Gajan made 28 saves in the loss.

Midwest Division Semi-Finals, Game 3: Minnesota 2 @ Kenai River 1 (OT) (Minnesota wins series, 3-0) – Wilderness goalie Isak Posch made 35 saves to lead his team to a 2-1 overtime win on Friday in Kenai River in Game 3, sweeping the series with the Brown Bears. After a scoreless 1st period, both goals in regulation came in the 2nd period as Nick Stevens scored to give Kenai River the lead, which was quickly answered by a goal from Kevin Marx Noren to tie the game at 1-1. Less than a minute into the overtime, the Wilderness took advantage of a power play as they won a face-off with the puck going right to Michael Quinn, who potted home the series winner. Brown Bears goalie Nils Wallstrom made 19 saves in the loss.

South Division Semi-Finals, Game 3: Oklahoma 4 @ Amarillo 3 (OT) (Oklahoma wins series, 3-0) – The Warriors erased a 3-0 deficit with three, 3rd period goals and then won just over a minute into overtime as they picked up a 4-3 overtime win in Game 3, which completed a three-game sweep of the Wranglers. Things were looking good for Amarillo, who jumped out to a 3-0 lead through two periods, which included goals from Jack Ivey, Cooper Rice, and Jack McDonald. The Warriors stormed back in the 3rd period to tie the game with three goals in seven minutes as Joey Delgreco, Hunter Jones, and Malte Hasselgren all found the back of the net. Just over a minute into OT, Brendan Williams netted the game-winner off a scramble in front. Daniel Duris made 21 saves in the win, while Luca Gans made 32 saves in the loss.

South Division Semi-Finals, Game 3: Lone Star 2 @ Shreveport 0 (Lone Star leads series, 2-1) – The Brahmas got a 23-save shutout from William Gramme as they took a 2-1 lead in the best of 5 series against the Mudbugs with a 2-0 shutout win in Game 3. As expected, the game was tight defensively with no goals in the 1st two periods. In the 3rd period, the Brahmas scored twice in a minute span as Dhillon Wilde and Will Laychur found the back of the net. Mudbugs goalie Simon Bucheler made 24 saves in the loss.

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