WarHawks down Steel at the start of the season | News, Sports, Jobs
NEW ULM – Willmar scored two goals in the second and third periods on Saturday night as the WarHawks beat New Ulm Steel 4-1 in a NA3HL season opener at the New Ulm Civic Center.
Zach Maillette scored the Steel’s lone goal in the third period, while Gus Cantwell got the assist.
Jeremiah Konkel scored two goals for Willmar.
WarHawks goaltender Cooper Olson stopped 27 of 28 shots, while Steel goalie Zach Foster stopped 38 of 42 shots.
For first-year head coach Curtis Doell, the result wasn’t how he wanted the season to start.
“Especially with the year they had last year,” he said. “I think we were too unruly tonight. We took a lot of penalties and we hung on a bit. But it’s a long season. There may have been kids who have had stage fright, so it’s a learning experience for us. “
After a scoreless first period, Willmar used the power play to get on the board at 4:19 of the second period when Konkel put on a rebound from Foster.
Just under five minutes later, Max Cohen made it 2-0 as he beat Foster on the stick.
The second period was also a period where the game got physical with three 10-minute misconduct penalties, including two at New Ulm.
“It’s gotten more physical than I think our guys are made for,” he said. “We need to use our speed more. “
Steel had chances to come back in the game, but failed to capitalize on seven power plays in the game.
“We are still in the process of determining our players”, Doell said. “We had a new defender. “
Konkel’s second goal of the game early in the third period gave Willmar a 3-0 lead before Maillette, who led New Ulm last year, scores at 3:35 pm to reduce the lead to 3-1 .
But Willmar salted the game with less than three minutes to go with a goal in the open net from Collin Kerkhoff.
Doell was happy with his shots on goal and had more pucks at net than in last Saturday’s scrum.
“I felt our penalty kill was good and we did a good job not letting them get the second and third chances,” Doell said. “And I thought Zach Foster was playing well in the net.”
New Ulm is home at 7:10 p.m. Friday at the New Ulm Civic Center when they host the Minnesota Loons.