Friday, February 13, 2009

Warroad Surges To Beat Grand Forks (ND) Central; Warriors Overcome 5-1 Deficit In 3rd To Tally 5 Unanswered Goals For Come-From-Behind Victory

Courtesy of Grand Forks Herald

By: Tom Miller / Sports

As a longtime resident of a place that calls itself Hockeytown USA, Warroad boys hockey coach Albert Hasbargen has seen plenty of strange things on the ice.

But Hasbargen said what happened Tuesday night trumps them all.

“I haven’t seen anything like that before,” Hasbargen said.


Warroad scored five goals in the final period to complete a 6-5 come-from-behind win over Grand Forks Central High School in nonconference play at Purpur Arena.

Warroad, 21-2, started the third period facing a 5-1 deficit.

But Dane Shaugabay scored on the power play at 2:01 of the final period to start the spree. Brett Hebel and Brock Nelson added two goals in the next 11 minutes to sink the Knights.
Hebel scored the game-winner with 3:53 remaining.

“We knew we played an awful (second) period,” Hasbargen said. “In the third period, we played hard and things went in the net. The adrenaline gets going, and we started believing we could do it.”

It was a drastic turnaround from the first two periods. After the first 34 minutes, the Warriors looked to be simply trying to stave off a blowout.

The Knights scored the game’s first four goals and led 5-1 after two periods.

Central’s Jake Plutowski recorded a hat trick, while Jordy Aamot and Casey Purpur also had goals.

Aamot’s tally just 10 seconds into the second period appeared to be the game-changer. Aamot scored shorthanded on a breakaway.

“That seemed to drain all of our emotion,” Hasbargen said. “That’s common of a shorthanded goal. We’ve done it to other teams. They score like that and it take a lot out of you.”

But behind the top line of Nelson, Shaugabay and Hebel, the Warriors had enough firepower to respond.

That trio was responsible for all six Warroad goals. It’s nothing new for the Warriors, as Nelson has a team-leading 55 points this season, followed by Shaugabay with 47 and Hebel with 44.

“They’re good hockey players,” Central coach Tony Bina said. “If you leave them room to operate, they’re going to bury it on you.”

The Knights dropped to 13-6.

“I think maybe we got a little overconfident,” Bina said. “We just didn’t stay focused on the little things that win games. We were too offensive-minded and didn’t take responsibility in our end like we did in the first two periods.

“This is a tough loss, but it’s something to learn from. We’ve given up leads like this twice now.

But we’re not going to let it happen a third time. We just won’t.”

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