Bobcats Bounce Back, Rally past Minotauros
BISMARCK, ND — After falling in an early hole, the Bismarck Bobcats popped off four consecutive goals to snag a 4-2 come-from-behind win Wednesday over the Minot Minotauros at the VFW Sports Center.
Though the Cats started hot with multiple scoring chances in the game’s opening minute, it was Minot that opened the scoring with 3:34 gone in the first when Chase Springman made a redirect of a Brady Dahl shot on the power play to post the visitors to a 1-0 advantage.
Less than six minutes later, the Bobcats managed to even the score at one on a delayed penalty call when Tristan Ashbrook pounced on a Kevin Ness rebound and blasted it by Minot keeper Lucas Murray with 10:35 to go in the first.
With 2:15 to go in the opening stanza, second-year forward Austin Junger pushed the Cats in front at 2-1 on the power play, burying a back-door feed from Ashton Altmann.
Junger scored again 6:36 into the second–moments after a Bobcat power play ended–redirecting a cross-ice pass from Parker Mismash under the cross bar to extend the lead to 3-1.
Newcomer Jarrett Mari put a cap on the home side’s four-goal outburst with 9:06 left in the middle frame, forcing a turnover and ripping the puck over the glove of relief netminder Eric Dop. The tally was initially waved off due to the net being dislodged, but the referees huddled to discuss the play and overturned the initial call, giving the Bobcats a 4-1 edge.
Minot pushed back hard in the final five minutes of the second with multiple grade-A scoring chances, culminating in rookie Alex Adams cashing in a 2-on-1 rush to cut the score to 4-2 with 2:51 remaining in the period.
Moments after Adams’ marker, Bobcat goalie Camden Haugenoe made a game-changing save, ranging far to his right to kick away a wide-open back door opportunity for third-year sniper Chase Springman to keep the Bobcats ahead by two.
In the third, the Cats held court on the offensive side of the red line, peppering Dop with scoring opportunities and siphoning away huge swaths of time while denying the Minotauros’ any extended time of possession. Ultimately, Minot only managed six shots in the final frame–all turned away by Haugenoe–and the Bobcats sealed away a 4-2 victory.
Haugenoe submitted a 17-save performance in his NAHL preseason debut. With 13 stops, Murray was saddled with the loss; Dop canceled out 23 of 24 shots faced but did not factor into the decision.
Now the Bobcats turn their attention the final game of the preseason, Sunday at 6:00pm against the Estevan Bruins of the SJHL.
Sunday’s game will be broadcast live on the radio home of Bobcat Hockey, Super Talk 1270 AM, with pregame coverage starting at 5:45pm.
Season tickets are now on sale for the Bobcats’ landmark platinum anniversary campaign: fans can get more information or reserve their seats for all of Season Twenty now by calling 222-3300.