Winning Time

Third Period Blitz Lifts Bobcats to 5-2 Win

BLAINE, MN – After falling behind early in the third period, the Bismarck Bobcats exploded for four consecutive goals to top the Janesville Jets 5-2 Friday at Schwan Super Rink on day two of the Easton NAHL Showcase.

Entering the third period tied at one with the North Division’s Jets, the Cats fell behind 2-1 just 97 seconds into the frame as Janesville’s Jordan Himley grabbed a back-door pass from Robin Hoglund and ripped a rising wrister over the shoulder of Bobcat goalie Aaron Nelson and in.

It would take the Cats a mere 1:04 to respond on a fluky play as Bobcats captain Filip Starzynski laid the puck toward the right post of Jets goalie Reed Kinsey; before the Janesville defense could clear the short pass, Stanislav Dzakhov squeezed a no-angle chip shot inside the short post to re-tie the contest 2-2.

Starzynski followed up 1:28 after the equalizer, cashing in a power play opportunity just 8 seconds into the man advantage by roofing a shot through traffic over a sprawling Kinsey to put the Cats ahead for good at 3-2.

“We have some veteran players who got important power play experience at the end of last season,” illustrated Bobcats head coach and general manager Layne Sedevie, whose squad went 2-for-6 on the ‘PP’ Friday, “and that’s been giving both units a lot more confidence now than I think we started last year with.”

Over eight minutes would pass in the third before the Cats continued their four-goal volley, with Bobcat newcomer Jared Dedenbach pushing the lead to 4-2 at the 7:07 mark when the Howell, Mich., native laid out to poke home a back-door pass from Dzakhov a moment before crashing into the short post.

The Bobcat defense blanketed the Jets after Dedenbach’s insurance marker, allowing Janesville just two shots for the remainder of regulation.

Consecutive penalties by the Jets in the final minute of play gave the Cats a brief 5-on-3 that Seth Blair converted when the fourth-year veteran slammed home a picture-perfect setup from Starzynski with three seconds left in the game for the final count of 5-2 in favor of the Bobcats.

In three regular season games, the Bobcats have now outscored their opponents 8-2 in the third period.

Rookie Bobcat forward Cullen Willox initially gave the black and gold the lead 3:28 into the contest, firing a transition snap shot from 50 feet out that deflected off a Janesville defender and in.

At the 18:13 mark of the second, the Jets answered back as Adam Winborg buried a low-slot pass from Alex Tremblay, tying the game at one.

Nelson made one of his biggest saves of the young season with 2:40 to go in the middle frame, flying from left to right to deny a wide-open back-door attempt for Michael Louria on a Janesville power play, keeping the game tied 1-1 heading into the third.

It took 22 stops for the third-year Bobcat goalkeeper to pick up his second win of the season. Kinsey made 20 saves in his first start of 2013-14 but slipped to 0-1-0.

The Bobcats will now wrap up the 2013 Easton NAHL Showcase Saturday with a 9:30 AM matchup against the Johnstown Tomahawks.

Saturday’s Showcase finale will be broadcast locally on the radio home of Bobcat Hockey, Super Talk 1270, KLXX-AM, and worldwide on the internet television partner of the North American Hockey League, Pregame coverage will get under way at 9:00 AM.

Season tickets for the 2013-14 season are now on sale—and going fast! Reserve your seats for the new season, including the brand new Dasher Bar, by calling the Bobcat Hockey office at 222-3300.