BREEZY POINT, Minn. – Todd Sanden’s team had to get used to a new routine Friday night…not that playing a game away from Mason City is something his team has never done. Far from it – they just haven’t done it in more than a month.
The Bulls took the change in routine in stride and took care of business Friday night, running their winning streak to eight games with an 8-1 win over the Breezy Point North Stars. Eight different players tallied goals for North Iowa in the win, including the first junior goal for Nick Bowlin (Oakdale, Minn./Tartan H.S.) in the third period.
The Bulls opened the scoring with Harrison Stewart (Rockford, Ill./Milwaukee Jr. Admirals) weaving through the defense on a 4-on-2 opportunity and planting one in the back of the net just 6:28 into the game. A turnover below the blue line along the left wall allowed Jimmy McDermott (Dubuque, Iowa/Wisconsin Whalers) to toss one to the net, where Matt Rozman (Edina, Minn./Edina Jr. Gold) tapped it in for a 2-0 lead.
The second period saw more of the same as Jarod Blackowiak (Eden Prairie, Minn./North Iowa Bulls) continued his torrid goal-scoring ways at the 4:22 mark with a one-timer from the inside hash marks to make it 3-0. McDermott added a goal of his own with 7:23 to go in the period with a shot from deep in the slot to make it 4-0 going to the second intermission.
Bowlin notched his first goal as a Bull at 8:47 of the third period, on a tight-angle one-timer from the right of North Stars netminder Dan Fielding. 57 seconds later, though, Breezy Point responded with a poke on the doorstep from Jordan Linder, just tucking the puck in the net past the outstretched leg of Connor Poczos (Austin, Minn./North Iowa Bulls) to bust up the shutout.
With 8:36 to go, Evan Junker (Elk River, Minn./Elk River H.S.) leaned into a shot from the right point to push the lead back to five. Already up 6-1, Brendan Studioso (Mukilteo, Wash./North Iowa Bulls) and Peter Verstegen (Oshkosh, Wis./North Iowa Bulls) each added goals just 43 seconds apart to extend lengthy personal streaks and send North Iowa to an 8-1 win.
With the goal, Studioso pushed his active point streak to 10 games, tallying multiple points in his last four straight. Verstegen and McDermott have tallied points in eight straight, and Blackowiak is up to 10 goals over his last 12 periods of hockey. Matt Dahlseide (Maplewood, Minn./North Iowa Bulls) reclaimed the team lead in points with an assist, running his own point-scoring streak to six games.
The Bulls finished 0-for-5 on the power play, with four of those chances coming in the third period. Poczos earned his sixth win in as many decisions, making 31 saves in the victory. Dan Fielding fell to 2-1-0-1 with the loss, making 39 stops on 47 North Iowa shots. With their four goals in the final period, the Bulls have now scored 17 third-period goals against the North Stars in their five meetings this season.
The Bulls climbed to 13-5-0-0 on the year with the win, while the North Stars slipped to 3-14-2-0 with the loss. The two teams get together again Saturday night, with a 7:30 p.m. puck drop at the Breezy Point Hockey Center. Live streaming coverage is available on HockeyTV.
North Iowa returns home on Friday, November 23 to face the Alexandria Blizzard on Black Friday at the North Iowa Ice Arena, with concession and merchandise specials during the game. The Bulls will also observe “Military Appreciation Night,” as we give thanks for those who serve to protect our country and our freedoms. For advance tickets to that game or any future North Iowa Bulls home game, click here.
North Iowa 2 2 4 – 8
Breezy Point 0 0 1 – 1
1st Period-1, North Iowa, Stewart 4 (Roo), 6:28. 2, North Iowa, Rozman 5 (McDermott, Petronack), 15:59. Penalties-Fagerlee Nio (slashing-minor), 13:15.
2nd Period-3, North Iowa, Blackowiak 11 (McDermott, Junker), 4:22. 4, North Iowa, McDermott 7 (Blackowiak, Studioso), 12:37. Penalties-O’Connor Bzp (cross checking-minor), 15:51.
3rd Period-5, North Iowa, Bowlin 1 (Rozman, Carlson), 8:47. 6, Breezy Point, Linder 1 (Wisegarver, Wieber), 9:44. 7, North Iowa, Junker 3 (Rozman, Bowlin), 11:24. 8, North Iowa, Studioso 10 (Bogach, McDermott), 12:52. 9, North Iowa, Verstegen 15 (Dahlseide, Fagerlee), 13:35. Penalties-Borseth Bzp (interference-minor), 0:31; Brockman Bzp (tripping-minor), 3:10; Studioso Nio (interference-minor), 3:53; Hoheisel Bzp (cross checking-minor), 14:19; Wieber Bzp (cross checking-minor), 16:21.
Shots on Goal-North Iowa 11-19-23-53. Breezy Point 9-11-12-32.
Power Play Opportunities-North Iowa 0 / 5; Breezy Point 0 / 2.
Goalies-North Iowa, Poczos 6-0-0-0 (32 shots-31 saves). Breezy Point, Fielding 2-1-1-0 (53 shots-45 saves).
Linesmen-Glenn Hagberg, Christopher Leary.