Bruins sweep series from Bobcats
The Austin Bruins completed the weekend sweep of the Bismarck (N.D.) Bobcats with a 5-2 win Saturday night at Riverside Arena.
This was the final home game of the regular season for the Bruins and they had a nice crowd of 1,367 fans on hand. It was a battle for the first two periods of this North American Hockey League, Central Division game.
Matt Hansen got the foghorn blowing in the opening minutes as the Bruins took the early lead. Jeremy Finger, who had two goals in the win Friday night, got the assist and it was a 1-0 lead with less than five minutes elapsed on the clock.
It took a while, but the visiting Bobcats fired back to tie the game. The division leaders scored about 11 minutes later and it was 1-1 after the first period.
In the opening four minutes of the second period, the Bobcats took the lead. The visitors fired off a total of 50 shots on the night and it looked this barrage might keep them on top.
AJ Reid, who scored the winning goal in the first game of the weekend set, answered back for the Bruins a short time later. Reid's goal came at the 5:33 mark of the second period and the game was tied for the last time.
Late in the second period, the Bruins took the lead for good on a goal by Charlie Adams. The home team held a 3-2 lead at the end of the second period and the rest of the night belonged to goalie Tyler Bruggeman.
Starting for the second consecutive game, Bruggeman had 48 saves in the win. Just like the night before, Bruggeman held the Bobcats scoreless in the third period. This gave his offense a chance to salt the game away.
A tripping penalty on the Bobcats allowed the Bruins to score an insurance goal in the final minute of the third period. Trevor Waldoch scored on the power play with 55 seconds left to give the Bruins a two-goal lead.
CJ Smith then capped off the home finale with an empty net goal in the closing seconds. The large crowd went away happy and bid a fond farewell to their favorite team until the playoffs.
AUSTIN BRUINS 5, BISMARCK 2
First period— Austin, Matt Hansen (Jeremy Finger), 4:36. Bismarck, Nicholas Miglio (Donald Olivieri, Ryan Callahan), 15:52.
Second period— Bismarck, Bryce Schmitt (Buster Hebda, Nicholas Miglio), 3:42. Austin, AJ Reid (Charlie Adams, Jonathan Gehrt), 5:33. Austin, Charlie Adams (Trevor Waldoch), 17:13.
Third period— Austin, Trevor Waldoch (Brandon Wahlin, Chris Fischer), 19:05 (pp). Austin, CJ Smith (Finger), 19:49 (empty net).
Shots-on-goal— Bismarck 22-14-14—50. Austin 12-10-7—29.
Goalies— Bismarck, Aaron Nelson (29 shots, 24 saves). Austin, Tyler Bruggeman (50 shots, 48 saves).
Penalties— Bismarck 5-23, Austin 5-13.