The Aberdeen Wings remain undefeated on the season after a 5-0 win over the St. Cloud Norsemen Friday night at the Odde Ice Arena.
It was an even affair through most of the first until Norsemen penalties gave the Wings the two-man advantage late in the period. That’s when Wings captain Clayton Cosentino found the back of the net at the 18:26 mark to put the Wings up 1-0. Cosentino, who notched his fifth goal of the season and twenty-fifth overall point, was assisted by Natan Vertes and Trevor Russell.
The Wings came out swinging in the second period — Vertes got the scoring started early just under two minutes in, with the assist going to Payton Matsui. At the 8:37 mark, defensemen Nico deVita scored from near the blue line on the power play, assisted by Cade Neilson and Jackson Yee. Neilson would get a goal of his own with just over twenty seconds left in the period, assisted by Jordan Randall, and the Wings headed into the final break leading 4-0.
The third period’s lone goal came from Spencer Schneider at the 4:40 mark, assisted by Matsui, who picked up his 12th assist of the season. Solid defense kept the Norsemen at bay for the Wings to skate away with the 5-0 victory.
“We came out of the gate slow but responded well in the second and third,” Wings head coach and general manager Scott Langer said. “There were some really good efforts tonight throughout our lineup.”
Wings goalie Jacob Sibell earned the shutout and the game’s first star honors after stopping all 23 shots he faced. Norsemen goalie Paxton Geisel stopped 32 of 37 shots faced, plus a third-period penalty shot from Matsui.
The Wings move to 15-0-0-0 on the season, while St. Cloud falls to 2-7-0-0.
Langer said his team is prepared to move ahead knowing the have a large target on their back.
“Our guys very rarely have to be reminded how hard it is to win each night in the NAHL,” he said. “They so far have responded very well to how hard teams are playing against us.”
The rematch happens Saturday night in Aberdeen. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the puck drops at 7:15 p.m. Fans can purchase tickets ahead of the game online at tickets.AberdeenWings.com. Fans can also receive a $5 general admission ticket at the door with a food pantry donation.
A specialty jersey auction will immediately follow Saturday’s game, where fans get the chance to bid on the jerseys worn over the weekend. The auction’s beneficiary is the Aspire Foundation in Aberdeen, a non-profit agency that provides an array of services to people with intellectual/developmental disabilities.