Bishop keeps coming up big
Superior High School's Chris Bishop was recently quoted saying the game-winning overtime goal he scored recently against Duluth Marshall was "the biggest goal of my life."...
Superior High School's Chris Bishop was recently quoted saying the game-winning overtime goal he scored recently against Duluth Marshall was "the biggest goal of my life."
Well, it's safe to say that the senior captain for the Spartan hockey team has a new one.
Bishop scored his second game-winning overtime goal within a span of eight days when he scored 30 seconds into the fifth overtime of Superior's 2-1 victory over River Falls Tuesday night at Wessman Arena.
"I guess I have to take the Marshall goal back now, five OTs, yeah, it's definitely the biggest goal of my career," Bishop said.
While the win gives the Spartans a date with New Richmond in the sectional championship game at 1 p.m. Saturday at Wessman Arena, Bishop almost missed the chance for his heroics when his legs cramped up during the fourth overtime.
"When the OT was over, trainer Mike (Gogolin) took me behind the bench and helped me stretch out so I could get back on the ice," Bishop said. "Mike had a lot to do with me scoring and us winning the game."
As for the winning goal, Bishop learned from earlier experiences in the game.
"All night they were going down to block shots," Bishop said. "At first I didn't have a clear shot. But I kind of gave him a pump fake, went around him and shot. Mitch (Kontny) was also in front of the goalie (providing a screen)."
Kontny was playing for the first time since suffering a leg injury in a 2-2 tie at Crookston, Minn., Feb. 5.
"He's a little tired, and his leg is a little sore, but it's great having him back," Bishop said. "We definitely can use him, he creates a lot of things for the team. He has good hands which gives him the opportunity to score goals."
Since Kontny's injury Bishop has been on fire, putting up 11 points in five games with three goals and eight assists. Despite his success, he brushed aside any thoughts that he felt any added pressure with Kontny out of the line up.
"Maybe a little bit, but not really," Bishop said. "I've just been playing pretty good lately. I'm not sure why, but the bounces have been going my way. They (the bounces) can always go the other way, too.
"When we lost Mitch, a lot of guys picked it up and stepped up their games."
The plan heading into Tuesday's game was to use Kontny on power plays only. That plan lasted one period.
"I got a little antsy and Coach (SHS coach Jason Kalin) asked if I felt good enough to play and I said, yeah, obviously," Kontny said. "I could barely move Wednesday morning, it was tough getting around school. But I feel good, just a little swollen. I'm back to 100 percent, almost."
Kontny is expected to be back on the No. 1 line Saturday along with seniors Kellen McCoshen and Tyler Plunkett.
"We couldn't keep Mitch off the ice, he really wanted to go," Kalin said. "He and Kellen kind of set the winning goal up. They really did some good things on that shift, getting the puck deep. Something we weren't doing all game."
Superior won earlier in the season at New Richmond, 3-1.
After a scoreless first period on Dec. 12, Tyler Montgomery gave the Tigers a 1-0 lead 20 seconds into the second period.
Plunkett tied up later in the second period and Daniel Litchke and Kontny scored power-play goals in the third period for the two-goal win.
Shot totals were also close with Joel Pettingill stopping 22 shots for Superior, which forced Tigers goaltender Patrick Hurley to come up with 27 saves.
"They're a good team, have a lot of good players and are physical," Bishop said. "Their coach likes to play a physical game so it should be a good battle."
Other line combinations for the Spartans are Nolan Holcombe, who has a team-high 13 goals along with Kontny, Daniel Litchke and Caleb Dushkin; triplets Gerald, Steven and Richard Mikel and Joel Broberg, Kyle Wilander and Taylor Olson.
Defensive pairings are Bishop and David Dalbec, Andrew Bronson and Jake Mergen and Brett Bukowski and Brady Uotinen.
"I personally think we took the River Falls game lightly and were looking past them," Kalin said. "The reason why Tuesdays' game was so tough was that they threw a system against us that we weren't really used to. We practiced for it, but we weren't executing against it.
"I expect Saturday's game to actually be tougher. New Richmond is going to come at us hard."
SPARTAN SPIN: Tickets for Saturday's sectional final game may be purchased in advance in the SHS treasurer's office from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. today. Tickets are $4. ... Bishop now leads the Spartans in points with eight goals and 22 assists. ... SHS seniors playing their final home game Saturday will be Pettingill, Mergen, Bronson, McCoshen, Bishop, Wilander, Kontny and Plunkett. ... Saturday's game may be heard locally on WNXR 107.3 FM. The game will also be carried live on the internet at ifan.tv.
Superior High School Boys Hockey Stats
G A Pts
Bishop, Chris 8 22 30
Kontny, Mitch 13 16 29
Holcombe, Nolan 13 9 22
McCoshen, Kellen 9 13 22
Plunkett, Tyler 9 11 20
Litchke, Daniel 9 8 17
Dushkin, Caleb 8 8 16
Mikel, Gerald 3 7 10
Olson, Taylor 6 3 9
Mergen, Jake 3 5 8
Wilander, Kyle 0 6 6
Mikel, Steven 4 1 5
Dalbec, Dave 1 4 5
Broberg, Joel 1 4 5
Mikel, Richard 1 2 3
Bukowski, Brett 1 2 3
Bronson, Andrew 0 3 3
Luke Darwin 2 0 2
Uotinen, Brady 1 1 2
Brandon Burd 0 0 0
TOTAL 92 126 218