Saturday night, the Aberdeen Wings hosted the Bismarck Bobcats in NAHL Central division action. The teams were parted by 5 points in the Central Divison for 3rd place with the race to make the playoffs beginning. Saturday night was also Shrine Night, with over 100 Shriners from local and area chapters. Wings fans were asked to participate in a Teddy Bear Toss, with all bears being donated to the Shriners Hospitals For Children.
Over 1,600 Wings fans jammed the Odde Ice Center to toss teddy bears on the ice and see the Wings gain consecutive night home wins after a 4-3 victory over Minot on Friday. The back-to-back home wins would be the first time since it’s happened since last season when the Wings ended the regular season with a home sweep of the Minnesota Magicians.
At the 13:12 mark, the teddy bears flew as Wings forward #23 Jackson Graalum (F-Fargo, ND) would score his 2nd goal since joining the team mid-way through the season. The assist was a beauty of a pass from #17 Will Hammer (F-St. Cloud, MN). The over 1,600 Wings fans tossed teddy bears on the ice following the goal. Wings staff gathered all the bears, approximately 350, which would all be donated to the Shriners Hospital For Children. Back to the action, at the 19:00 mark, Wings forward #21 Bjorn Sigurdarson (F-Reykjavik, Iceland) would score giving the Wings a 2-0 lead, with assist to #23 Jackson Graalum.
With no scoring in the 2nd period, the 3rd would prove to be the most intense period of hockey on the ice this season so far. At the 4:50 mark, Bobcats’ Batna would plow over Wings goaltender #35 Andrew Shortridge (G-Eagle River, AK) allowing the puck to cross the line making it 2-1, Wings lead. With about 5 minutes left in the game, Batna would get another goal while on the power play tying the game 2-2. The Wings would battle for puck possession and take a few good scoring opportunities before being shut down. Regulation would end 2-2.
No scoring in overtime would lead to a shootout. Bobcats’ Willox would not score. Wings forward #16 Kyle Haak (F-Okemos, MI) would score giving the Wings a 1-0 advantage. Round two would find Bobcats’ Geisler scoring, Wings forward #13 Michael Soucier (F-Caledon, Ontario) not scoring, now even 1-1. Bobcats’ Rivard would score while Wings forward #21 Bjorn Sigurdarson would not, now 2-1 Bobcats advantage. After a miss from Bobcats’ Strand, Wings defenseman #10 Tanner Okeson (D-Roseau, MN) would score making it even again 2-2. In the 5th round of the shootout, Wings goaltender #35 Andrew Shortridge would stop the Bobcats’ Herdt, and Wings forward #11 Victor Ostling (F-Stockholm, Sweden) would seal the deal with a pretty goal giving the Wings a 3-2 victory in a shootout.
With the Bobcats getting 1 point, they now have 52 points in third in the NAHL Central, while Aberdeen gains two points up to 48 and 4th place in the division.
BUTLER-CAT HIT OF THE GAME
Aberdeen #2 Ryan Cook (D-Lancaster, NY)
SD WHEATGROWERS STARS OF THE GAME
3rd Star – Aberdeen #17 Will Hammer (F-St. Cloud, MN)
2nd Star – Aberdeen #23 Jackson Graalum (F-Fargo, ND)
1st Star – Aberdeen #35 Andrew Shortridge (G-Eagle River, AK)
Monday and Tuesday is the 2015 NAHL Top Prospects Tournament in Ann Harbor, Michigan. Wings forwards #21 Bjorn Sigurdarson (F-Reykjavik, Iceland) and #16 Kyle Haak (F-Okemos, MI) will represent the NAHL Central Division. Also representing the division will be former Wings goaltender Chad Catt who was named to the team prior to his trade to the Soo Eagles of the NAHL North Division. Monday’s game is at 12:00pm CST as the NAHL Central takes on the NAHL North. On Tuesday, the NAHL Central takes on the NAHL South at 1:00pm CST. All games will be broadcast on FASTHockey.com with live play-by-play and video streaming.