The North Iowa Bulls had a very exciting showing at the showcase in Darien IL.
The North Iowa Bulls took on the Toledo Cherokee the night of Sunday, December 4.
Toledo wasted no time scoring as they capitalized on a goal early in the first period. However, North Iowa Bulls forward Sergey Barkin tied up the score late in the first period off assists from Brian Harrison and Bobby Chapman.
North Iowa came out strong in the second period with two unreturned goals. Bulls forward Jared Ramstead continued his strong play with the first goal in the second period with Nick Marsh and Bobby Chapman on the assist. Sergey Barkin found the back of the goal for his second score of the night putting the Bulls up 3-1 at the end of the second period.
North Iowa was able to stop any attempt by Toledo in the third period as Bulls goalie Matthew Bartels recorded 25 saves on 26 shots. The North Iowa Bulls came out victorious 3-1 and looked to move into a week full of competition.
North Iowa started off their week in an early afternoon, high scoring game, against the Queen City Steam on Monday, December 5.
Queen City would come out early with a 1-0 lead early in the first, but it was all North Iowa Bulls hockey for the rest of the first. North Iowa forward Ryan McAloon tied the score 1-1 with Eric Behrend and Joey Crespo assisting on the goal. McAloon would come back minutes later to break the tie and put the Bulls up 2-1 with another goal once again assisted by Behrend and Crespo. Bulls forward Matt Kroska had the final say in the first period as he was able to score, making the Bulls lead 3-1 at the end up the first period.
Queen City battled back early in the second period to even the score 3-3 but the tie would not last long. Bulls forward Eric Behrend scored to break the tie in the second as Joey Crespo and Brenden Giffel assisted on the score. Bulls forward Patrick Sivets extended the lead to 5-3 late in the second period.
Ryan McAloon completed his hat trick late in the third period extending the Bulls lead to 6-3. Queen City added two goals late in the third period, but the night belonged to Ryan McAloon and the North Iowa Bulls as McAloon broke away for the goal for his fourth goal of the night sealing the victory 7-5.
North Iowa would turn around and find themselves in a tight matchup the following day against the Pittsburgh Jr. Penguins early Tuesday afternoon.
North Iowa opened up the scoring on a powerplay as Brian Harrison scored on an assist from Noah Anderson and Nick Marsh. Pittsburgh came around in the first, to score two unanswered goals giving the Jr. Penguins a 2-1 lead at the end of the first period.
Once again North Iowa came out strong in the second period scoring on two powerplays as Noah Anderson scored first for the Bulls in the second period and Patrick Sivets and Matt Kroska assisted on the goal. Bulls forward Skylar Harding scored on the second powerplay of the period as Matt Kroska and Brian Harrison assisted on the point. Pittsburgh would tie the score 3-3 late in the second setting up the stage for an exciting third period.
North Iowa and Pittsburgh showcased their defense in the third as both teams found that breaking the tied score would be a challenge. Pittsburgh was finally able to break past the tough Bulls defense and score giving them a 4-3 lead and ultimately the victory.
The North Iowa Bulls found themselves in another tight game Wednesday morning as they took on the Metro Jets Hockey Club.
Metro scored first late in the first period, but North Iowa forward Skylar Harding tied the score shortly after on a goal assisted by Matt Kroska and Patrick Sivets. North Iowa would end up with the lead 2-1 as Nick Marsh found the back of the goal to give the Bulls momentum at the end of the first period.
Defense was key in the second period as only one goal was scored by Metro knotting the score 2-2 going into the final period of play.
The North Iowa Bulls and Metro Jets would continue to match each other as Metro scored late in the third giving them a 3-2 lead, but only to see the score be tied again by Bulls forward Jared Ramstead. With the score at 3-3 the Bulls were headed to overtime. Neither team was able to seal the victory in overtime as a shootout would be the deciding factor.
Metro came out strong with their penalty shots as they capitalized on their first two shots. Jared Ramstead was able to find the goal making the shootout 2-1 in favor of the Metro Jets. Metro was able to add one more to their total and North Iowa could not come back as the Metro Jets Hockey Club won the shootout 3-1.