Post Game Report 12-17
BLAINE, Minn. – The North Iowa Bulls still hold the NA3HL’s Silver Cup championship trophy, but the Bulls have company atop the list of the league’s longest-ever winning streaks after a Silver Cup finals rematch on Saturday. The Metro Jets put away the Bulls with two third-period goals in a 3-1 matinee at the 3HL Showcase, winning their 27th straight game to tie North Iowa for the longest winning streak ever in league play.
Hayden Winch ripped the opening goal of the game past Brady Meyers (Rochester, Minn./John Marshall H.S.) at the 4:59 mark of the first period, with a wrist shot on the right edge of the slot. The Bulls led the shot count in the second period 12-8, but it was an early shot from Owen Larson (Minneapolis, Minn./North Iowa Bulls) that evened up the contest. Larson was waiting right in front of Jake Gwillim and the Metro net for a pass from Marshall Barnes (Edina, Minn./North Iowa Bulls) out of the corner, and he got the pass he wanted for a quick one-timer and the tying goal at 3:17 of the second period.
3:52 had come off the clock in the third period when Louis Boudon’s tough-angle shot slipped past a diving attempt from Meyers to give the lead to the Jets for good. Oddly enough, 3:52 remained on the clock when a breakaway goal from Jason Newel added some final insurance to the Jets’ lead.
“To an extent I think we’re beating ourselves, trying to do too much,” says Larson. “We’ve just got to throw the puck on the net and hope it goes in. I thought we ran into a pretty good goaltender yesterday against Texas, and today we had 29 shots. Maybe it’s just placement, or maybe it’s just not getting to the net and taking the goalie’s eyes away. It’s just hard work – hard work beats talent and that’s what it’s going to take to get the W [on Sunday].”
Meyers stopped 22 shots in the loss as he drops to 8-3-1 for the season and the Bulls fall to 22-4-1. It’s the first time the three-time 3HL champs have lost back-to-back games since January of 2015.
The Jets can break North Iowa’s league record by beating the Texas Jr. Brahmas on Sunday afternoon. The Brahmas knocked off the Bulls on Friday with a shootout victory. The Bulls will try to avoid their first winless trip to the Showcase since 2011 as they take on the New England Stars on Sunday morning. The game gets underway at 9:50 a.m. at the Schwan Super Rink in Blaine. All Bulls games, home and away, are streamed live on HockeyTV – all home games and select road games are also audio-streamed live on Mixlr.