M&M Thunder salvages weekend split
Team rallies to win at Pettit Ice Center
Saturday, December 07, 2013 6:00 PM
MILWAUKEE - A jaw-dropping opportunity and a good performance on Sunday erased the sting of Saturday's dismal loss by the M&M Thunder high school hockey team.
On Saturday, the Thunder lost 5-3 to Calumet. Sunday, the Thunder won 4-2 over the Pettit Eagles at Milwaukee's Pettit National Ice Center, an Olympic training facility.
At the Pettit Center, the speedskating rink is outside of the hockey rink.
The Thunder fell behind 2-0 in the first period. Colin Hass scored on a power play late in the period to cut the deficit in half. Gunther DeDamos and Jake Swenson earned assists.
In the second period, Brock Jersey scored the tying goal unassisted. Mark Pulver scored on Andy Swanson's assist.
"We really started forechecking," Thunder coach Frank Best said. "Where they controlled the first period, we controlled the second."
Jersey scored on assists by Denin Bieberitz and Pulver in the third period.
The teams met in last season's Wisconsin Amateur Hockey Association state tourney semifinals.
"The second and third period we got our legs," Best said.
M&M goalie Zak Giese made 18 saves, and the Thunder took 22 shots on goal.
Just 12 hours after beating Calumet 3-1, the Thunder lost to Calumet in Saturday's rematch at the Civic Center.
Best admires the Ice Kings for their disciplined hockey.
"They just outworked us," he said. "They just don't give up."
Calumet scored three goals in the first five minutes.
The Thunder cut the deficit to 3-1 in the second period on Pulver's power play goal, but the Ice Kings answered one minute later.
Hass scored unassisted to cut the deficit to 4-2.
In the third period, Hass scored on assists from Jersey and Bieberitz to cut the deficit to 4-3.
Giese made 27 saves, and the Thunder took 30 shots on goal.
"I thought they really controlled the play," Best said. "We came out flat, fell too far behind As well as we played Friday night, we slipped back into a lot of bad habits."
The Thunder, 2-3, has been slowed by an injury, illness, and the absence of players during Menominee's amazing football season. Best expects the team to begin jelling. The team will play at L'Anse and Marquette this weekend.