Spartan skaters blanked by Antigo (updated)
The Antigo Red Robins made their first trip to Superior a memorable one as they defeated the Superior High School boys hockey team 1-0 Saturday afternoon at Wessman Arena.
The Spartans failed to take advantage of a tired Red Robins squad, which won 3-2 Friday night at New Richmond and arrived at their hotel in Superior around midnight.
“They played a game last night (Friday) and they were tired, you could see it, but I think they had more gas in the tank in the third period than they did in the first two,” SHS coach Jason Kalin said. “They just wanted it more. They out-willed us that entire game, it’s really unfortunate.”
Superior outshot Antigo 8-6 in a scoreless first period and then had a 9-3 shot advantage in the second period when Antigo took a 1-0 lead on Isaac Wickersheim’s goal with an assist from Tyler Husnick.
The Spartans also had a 9-7 shot advantage in the third period, with most of their shots coming in the final minute of the game.
Superior’s best scoring opportunity came early in the third period when Taylor Burger and Tyler Nelson had a 2-on-1 breakaway while skating shorthanded. Nelson picked up a loose puck in the neutral zone, skated down the right wing, pulled the defenseman over and centered to Burger, whose shot when just wide left.
The Spartans also had a power-play chance with 7:34 remaining and then put four or five shots on goal in the final minute before Antigo was able to clear the puck, allowing the final five seconds to tick off the clock.
“We had our chances, but we waited until the last seven minutes of the game to start playing hard,” Kalin said. “It’s unfortunate, but you have some guys giving it and some are taking it off. There were kids yawning in the locker room, it’s game day and we want the kids to be ready. They’re not ready and didn’t perform very well in the first period and it carried over.
“We have to work on the little things, like passing and hitting, but it’s the preparation, the want, the desire to win that we need to instill in these kids.”
Ben Bartletti finished with 26 saves for Antigo and Caden Welch had 15 saves for Superior.
Superior hosts Chippewa Falls at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
SPARTAN SPIN: Antigo leads the all-time series with Superior 3-1. … Superior won the JV game 7-1. The Spartans, who outshot the Red Robins 59-10, got two goals from Ian Johnson and one goal apiece from Kaleb Ullan, James Bronson, Joe Eliason, Andrew Parkinson and Derrick Mattson. Gunnar Gronski had three saves for Superior. Brody Bunnell had 58 saves for Antigo.
Antigo.......................... 0 1 0 — 1
Superior........................ 0 0 0 — 0
First Period — No scoring.
Second Period — 1. A, Isaac Wickersheim (Tyler Husnick), 13:51.
Third Period – No scoring.
Saves — Ben Bartletti, A, 8-9-9—26. Caden Welch, SHS, 6-2-7—15.