BATTLE OF THE BIRDS: Hawks hockey team tamed by Cardinals, Eagles

Kevin Passon

The Shawano/Bonduel boys hockey team had 27 shots on goal against the Stevens Point Pacelli Cardinals on Dec. 7 but could only come up with one goal in their 5-1 loss.

The Cardinals scored once in the first period and twice in the second to give them a 3-0 lead before the Hawks finally scored.

At 5:57 in the third period, Gavin Bundt scored with an assist from Karson Stoss to make it 3-1. However, the Cardinals scored twice more in the period.

“I thought our effort and energy were the best they’ve been all season,” coach Adam Gafner said. “Sometimes when your team is in a slump, sports can be kind of cruel. For the first two periods of this game, we were the better team yet were down 3-0. (Goalie) Issac Andrich was the difference in the first two periods. Sometimes you just have to tip your cap to a player on the the other team; he was special when they needed it.”

Shawano/Bonduel spent no time in the penalty box, while the Cardinals were hit for 14 minutes on seven infractions.

Shawano/Bonduel goalie Tyson Lyons collected 26 saves.

“We still have some things to clean up; however, our group will roll up our sleeves and keep working to turn this around,” Gafner said. “It’s how I was raised and how I will lead.”

Dec. 5

Victory continued to escape the grasp of the Shawano/Bonduel boys hockey team, following a 7-3 loss to Northland Pines on Dec. 5.

“Unfortunately, I feel we are in the movie ‘Groundhog Day’ for the first two weeks of the season – different opponent yet more of the same things continue to plague us as a team,” coach Adam Gafner said. “Again we got down 2-0 after the first period. Now in three games, we’ve been outscored 6-1 in the opening frame. We need to start faster as a team, and that is on me as the coach.”

In that first period, Northland Pines had nine shots on goal, compared to four for Shawano/Bonduel.

The team swapped goals in the second period. Shawano/Bonduel got on the scoreboard with an even-strength goal by Gavin Bundt and an assist by Blake Knope to make it 2-1 just 33 seconds into the period. An Eagles’ goal put the visitors up by a pair again, but Shawano/Bonduel came back at 11:28 with an even-strength goal by Wyatt Schroeder and and an assist from Stoss.

“During the second, we got back within one goal multiple times with Hundt scoring and making it 2-1 and Schroeder with his first ever high school goal making it 3-2,” Gafner said. “Unfortunately, we made an error late in the period and gave up a goal to go down 4-2 as the clock expired. Out of all the goals we’ve given up this year, that one specifically impacted us internally as a team. Up until that moment, we outplayed them in the second period.”

Both teams made the most of their shots on goal in the period, as each team had three.

Trailing 4-2 entering the third period, Northland Pines scored three goals to grab a commanding 7-2 lead. Stoss ended the scoring with a power-play goal at 16:43 with assists from Bundt and Schroeder.

“Right now we have a locker room that’s ‘pressing,’” Gafner said. “We haven’t played up to the expectations that we have for ourselves. On a positive note, I’m glad its bothering them. On the other hand, it’s also dividing them. So we have two choices going forward – roll up our sleeves and fix this or implode. It’s time to get out our lunch pails and work.”

For the Eagles, Josh Graves had a hat trick and Michael Schmidt had two goals. Tyler Busha and August Nordine each had two assists.

Northland Pines goalie Eli Kerner made 13 saves. For Shawano/Bonduel, Tyson Lyons gave up four goals and had eight saves in his two periods of play, while Kaiden Thornborrow gave up three goals and made two saves in his one period of play.

Northland Pines served six penalty minutes on three infractions, while Shawano/Bonduel served 20 minutes for six penalties.