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Late goal lifts Rockets past West

Matt Armstrong capitalized on a late power play opportunity to help John Marshall to a 2-1 boys hockey victory over Mankato West on Saturday at the Rec Center.

Armstrong scored with 2:25 remaining, off of a pass from Nate Dunfee, snapping a 1-1 tie.

Armstrong assisted on JM's first goal, scored by John Magee just 4:48 into the first period. Jay Gorman also assisted on Magee's goal, which put JM up 1-0 after one period.

West answered in the second when J.B. Brennan scored an unassisted goal on a breakaway. The goal was the only blemish on a solid night for JM junior goalie Ben Pirius, who stopped 20 shots.

"He played well," JM coach Aaron Neurer said of Pirius. "He's strong on the puck, and he doesn't allow many rebounds."

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JM outshot West 34-21. The Rockets are now 5-0 overall and 2-0 in the Big Nine.

"West did a good job," Neurer said. "We've shut them out the past two years, and they have all of their guys back this year. They were ready for us, and they played the way they wanted to play.

"We didn't match their energy. I like the way we're winning close games, but we weren't ready mentally."

JM is back in action Thursday at the Rec Center against Albert Lea at 7:30 p.m.

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