The Aberdeen Wings faced a tough obstacle Saturday night, down by four goals in the third period. But two goals later, the team felt a spark as they tried to close the gap further.
However, an empty net goal sealed their fate as they fell 5-2 on the road against the Austin Bruins.
After a scoreless first period, the Bruins found themselves on their third power play of the night and Anthony Menghini found the back of the net to open the scoring just under six minutes into the second. Justin Wright added another goal at the 11:09 mark, while Isaak Brassard scored the Bruins’ third goal of the period at the 16:42 mark.
Austin added a fourth goal to their tally when Matys Brassard scored at the 8:33 mark in the third period. Not wanting to be shut out, Aberdeen’s Ronan Walsh dangled around a defender and fired from the top of the circle, snagging his 16th goal of the season and second of the weekend at the 14:11 mark. Devon Carlstrom picked up his eighth assist on the year.
With less than two minutes on the clock, the Wings went on the power play and needed just ten seconds to find another goal. That’s when Will Gilson fired from the blue line and Cade Neilson reached for the rebound and sent a shot from between the circles. The power play goal was his 18th goal of the season, while Hugo Gustafsson grabbed his eighth assist and Gilson notched his tenth.
After a Bruins icing call with 40 seconds left, Wings goaltender Dominik Wasik headed to the bench, but Nick Catalano found the empty net and the game’s final goal.
Overall, the two teams were tied in shots on goal, each taking 34, and both went 1-5 on the power play as well. Wings head coach Steve Jennings was happy to see two, albeit late, goals.
“The push was good and shows what we are capable of,” he said. “The kids didn’t give in to a goalie who played well.”
Walsh led all Wings scorers with two goals on the weekend, while Kyle Gaffney added a goal and an assist and Gustafsson had two assists in the two games.
The Wings return to the Odde Ice Center for a weekend at home when they host the North Iowa Bulls for two big games this Friday and Saturday, Jan. 28-29; doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the puck drops at 7:15 p.m. both nights. Fans can purchase tickets now at Tickets.AberdeenWings.com or at the door. $10 general admission tickets are also available at any C-Express location in Aberdeen, with additional purchase.
“For the coming week, it’s an important week for us,” Jennings said. “We need to get back into the win column and get back to our form.”