The University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point men’s hockey team was out-skated on Saturday night, losing to St. Norbert College in the Peters Cup, 4-0.
With the win, St. Norbert has qualified for the NCAA Division III tournament. The loss ends what had been a successful season for the Pointers.
The Green Knights started the romp at the 10:27 mark in the first period, with a power play goal by senior forward Alain Joanette, assisted by freshman forward Cullen Bradshaw and senior forward Seth Soley.
St. Norbert College capitalized on another power play at the 2:26 mark in the second period, when junior forward Cody Keefer netted his 13th goal of the season. The goal was assisted by senior forward Johan Ryd and junior defender Carl Ekstrom.
The Green Knights struck again in the second period at 14:40, with another power play goal by Soley, assisted by Bradshaw and freshman defender Marian Fiala.
St. Norbert College finished the night with a goal at the 3:41 mark in the third period, when Kyle Stroh netted his 10th goal this year. He was assisted on the goal by Ryd.
St. Norbert’s goalie, David Jacobson, recorded his second straight shutout, recording 21 saves and the win. Pointer goalie Brandon Jaeger tallied 23 saves and was charged with the loss.
“I didn’t think that we executed our game plan the way we would have liked,” said junior forward Jerry Freismuth. “We dug ourselves into a hole and it is tough to climb out of it against a team like St. Norbert.”
With the win, St. Norbert College has now won five of the last six Peters Cup titles, 10 overall.
One of the main issues for the Pointers on the night was the power play on both offense and defense.
“St. Norbert is a team that has been hot on the power play over the past four games,” said Point head coach Chris Brooks. “Their power play was 3-5 and we were 0-5.”
With his two assists, Ryd now has a total of 36 points on the season, which is first place in the Northern Collegiate Hockey Association.
With the win, St. Norbert College improves their record to 17-5-5, and Stevens Point ends the season with a record of 14-11-4.
“I am proud of my teammates for the hard work and dedication they put in this season,” Freismuth said. “I wish the seniors the best of luck in the future.”
Having been Brooks’ first year as the Pointers’ head coach, the year can be looked at as very successful.
“I am proud of the way the guys grasped many concepts that led to our success,” Brooks said. “The progress we made as a team from the start of the year was outstanding.”
Looking to the future, Stevens Point should be even more competitive next year.
The Pointers have five of the team’s seven leading scorers returning next year, including the NCHA leading goal scorer, Kyle Heck.
“The culture that coach Brooks has created here at Stevens Point is going to make our team successful,” Freismuth said. “This season has made us realize what we are capable of accomplishing, and with the guys that we have coming back it will only get better.”