The North Iowa Bulls had a busy and successful holiday week in front of their home crowd in Mason City.
The Bulls took to the ice for a Thanksgiving night game against the Twin City Steel.
North Iowa pulled out to an early 1-0 lead over the Steel with a goal by forward Ryan Ach assisted by Brian Harrision and Joey Crespo. Twin City would not stay scoreless for long as Clayton Ludlum tied the score 1-1 on a powerplay late into the first period.
The second period belonged to the North Iowa Bulls as they were able to score three unanswered goals. Bulls forward Nick Marsh was the first to break the tie in the second as he scored on a shorthanded goal with assists from Carson Gray and Patrick Sivets. Sivets was the next to score on a powerplay extending the Bulls lead 3-1 over the Twin City Steel. The Bulls capped off their charge in the second period as forward Bobby Chapman scored on another Bulls powerplay extending the lead 4-1 at the end of two periods.
North Iowa went into the third period with a strong 4-1 lead over the Twin City Steel and looked to stop any comeback attempt. The Steel came out scoring quickly in the third period, but the Bulls shutdown defense made scoring impossible for the Steel for the remainder of the game.
The Bulls were on their home ice once again in Mason City on Saturday, November 26 against the division leader Granite City Lumberjacks.
The first period saw a hard defensive battle between the Bulls and Lumberjacks as Bulls defensemen Connor Langfield scored the only first period goal on a powerplay with Nick Marsh and Andrew Halama on the assist.
Coming into the second period with a 1-0 lead in favor of the Bulls, forward Matt Kroska added to the lead on the Lumberjacks 2-0, with assists from Patrick Sivets and Carson Gray. However, Granite City was able to find the back of the goal later in the second period on a powerplay making the score 2-1 at the end of the second period.
Coming into the third period Matthew Bartels had only allowed one goal all game and he looked to keep it that way. As the Bulls defense allowed no scoring in the third period, Patrick Sivets extended the lead 3-1 on an empty net goal late in the third to seal the victory. On the night Matthew Bartels recorded 32 saves on 33 shots solidifying a home victory in Mason City.
North Iowa hit the road the following morning on Sunday, November 27 for a late afternoon game against the Minnesota Flying Aces.
North Iowa found the back of the goal three times in the first period with scores by Eric Behrend (powerplay), Ryan McAloon, and Joey Crespo. Minnesota was able to put a score up in the first as well making the score 3-1 at the end of the first period.
Minnesota started the second period quickly with a powerplay making the score 3-2 early in the second. Bulls forward Nick Marsh showed his scoring ability with a goal assisted by Bobby Chapman and Justin Gregory. Minnesota came back with a late score to inch closer to the Bulls 4-3 lead at the end of the second period.
The third period delivered some late game drama as Minnesota tied the game 4-4. Nick Marsh would put an end to the Flying Aces hopes of winning as he found the back of the net for the second time in the game extending the lead and sealing the game 5-4 over the Minnesota Flying Aces.
The North Iowa Bulls improved their record to 11-9 on the season. The Bulls return to the ice Sunday, December 04 to take on the Toledo Cherokee in the Darien IL Showcase.