Bobcats Smother Express 3-1

Nov 18, 2010

BISMARCK, ND – The Bismarck Bobcats barged back into a first-place tie atop the Central Division, riding a dominant defensive effort to a 3-1 victory over the Owatonna Express Friday at the VFW Sports Center.

The win puts the Bobcats (12-7-1, 25 pts) ahead of the Express (11-8-3, 25 pts) in the Central on the tiebreakers of wins, winning percentage and head-to-head.

Forward Frank DeAugustine put the home side on the board 5:36 into the game during a 4-on-4, one-timing home a centering feed from co-leading scorer Charlie Mosey off of the stick of Express netminder Brock Kautz to boost the Cats to a 1-0 lead.

“It was great getting Charlie back out there,” said DeAugustine of the recent Dartmouth recruit, who returned Friday after missing two weeks to an ankle injury. “I played a couple months with him before he went down and we made a good connection on that goal. He was out there playing through some soreness but even playing hurt he’s better than most guys in the division.”

DeAugustine picked up his second straight goal 4:07 into the second, taking a centering feed in traffic from Matt Gates and blasting a rising shot over Kautz’ glove to extend the lead to 2-0.

Owatonna responded just 1:21 after DeAugustine’s second tally, drawing a penalty in the Bobcats’ zone and, on the ensuing power play, getting a Chris Bournazos power play deflection of a Marian Fiala shot past Ryan Faragher to cut the Cats’ lead to 2-1 with 14:32 left in the middle frame.

The Bobcats got some insurance late in the second when Gates picked up a Rosenthal rebound and bounced it off Kautz and into the net to push the advantage out to 3-1 with 1:47 left in the second.

A stifling defensive effort in the third limited the Express—who took seven penalties in the final stanza—to just three shots over the last 20 minutes as the Cats cruised to a 3-1 final at home.

The win boosted the Bobcats back to .500 at home with a 3-3-0 record, as the defending champs look to improve their play in front of the home faithful.

“We want to win every single home game from here on out,” nodded Gates, who finished with two points Friday. “It started tonight but we know we’re going to have to come out twice as hard tomorrow because Owatonna will play their butts off to try and save a split here.”

Faragher needed just 18 saves to secure his 11th win of 2010-11, only making 8 saves over the last two periods as his defense gave him clear sightlines and cleared almost every rebound from the crease.

Kautz took the loss, his third of the year, behind only 15 saves on Friday.

The two teams will wrap their two-game set with sole possession of first place on the line Saturday with a 7:15 PM puck drop at the VFW Sports Center.

The series finale will be broadcast locally on the radio home of Bobcat Hockey, Super Talk 1270, KLXX-AM, and worldwide at Pre-game coverage will begin at 6:45 PM CT.

Season tickets are now on sale for the 2010-11 season! Call the Bobcat Hockey office at (701) 222-3300 or email for more information on reserving your seats for the entire season as the Bobcats look to defend the Robertson Cup!