Lucas Kohls scored twice, including once in triple overtime, to end the longest game in North American Hockey League history. Kohls’ goal on Saturday night gave the Austin Bruins a 4-3 victory over Minot and advanced the team to the next round of the Robertson Cup playoffs with a three-games-to-one series win.
Minot led 2-0 after one period in Game 4, but Austin recovered to force a 3-3 tie after two periods. The teams did not score again until 3:02 remained in the third overtime, ending 116:58 of hockey.
Brandon Wildung made 67 saves for Minot, including back-to-back stops, before Kohls converted a loose rebound to end the series. Nick Lehr had 50 stops for Austin in the win.
The previous longest NAHL game had lasted 113:47 April 8, 2010, when the St. Louis Bandits defeated the Texas Tornado 3-2.
ROBERTSON CUP: The Bismarck Bobcats and Wenatchee Wild, a pair of third-place teams in their divisions, each advanced in the Robertson Cup playoffs along with six teams that had the home-ice advantage in the first round.
The division finals, which begin Friday, are all best of five. Bismarck is playing Austin in the Central Division and Wenatchee is taking on Fairbanks in the Midwest Division. The top two seeds meet in the North, where the division champion Port Huron Fighting Falcons play the Michigan Warriors. The South’s top teams, the division champion Amarillo Bulls and the Topeka RoadRunners, also will play.
Wenatchee and Fairbanks each wrapped up 3-2 series victories with overtime wins Saturday. The Wild pulled out a 1-0 win over the Minnesota Wilderness when Chase Perry made 48 saves and Omar Mullen scored late in the first extra session. Kyle Lee scored 4:44 into overtime to lead Fairbanks over the Kenai River Brown Bears, 3-2.
Evan Giesler scored six goals for Bismarck during a three-game sweep.
BIRTHDAY TRICK: Defenseman Brandon Montour’s hat trick on his 20th birthday Friday got the regular-season champion Waterloo Black Hawks off to a high-scoring start in the United States Hockey League’s Clark Cup playoffs.
The Black Hawks defeated the Sioux Falls Stampede 7-4 Friday and 6-3 Saturday to open a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five first-round series. Waterloo can become the first team to advance when the Clark Cup playoffs resume Thursday night.
Blake Winiecki scored two goals in the opener and had four points in Game 2. After two games, Winiecki has six points, Tyler Sheehy has five, Montour and Liam Pecararo have four and Drew Melanson has three.
Montour finished ninth in the USHL in scoring with 62 points in 60 games for the most points by a defenseman in the league’s Tier I era. His 48 assists were second best in the league. Montour came within five points of the USHL defenseman record of 67 points set by Mike Ross with the Rochester Mustangs in the 1986-87 season.
CLARK CUP: Sioux City also opened a 2-0 lead in a first-round Clark Cup series. The Musketeers went on the road to defeat the Lancers in Omaha, 4-3 in overtime Saturday and 2-1 Sunday.
Avery Peterson had two goals, including the overtime winner, Saturday. Kyle Hayton had 40 saves in the first game and 33 in the second for Sioux City.
The other two series — the Green Bay Gamblers against the Indiana Ice and the Dubuque Fighting Saints and Cedar Rapids RoughRiders — are both tied 1-1. Green Bay overcame a 2-0 shutout loss Friday to post a 6-5 win Saturday. Dubuque and Cedar Rapids split one-goal games.
ONE-TIMERS: Todd Burgess, an 18-year-old forward from Phoenix, Ariz., playing with the NAHL’s Fairbanks Ice Dogs, has committed to play at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. … Matt Weis (4-7--11) and Nick Schmaltz (5-5--10) each scored in all six games when Green Bay won five of its last six regular-season games to grab the last USHL playoff berth. … The USHL has formally approved the Bloomington Thunder, an expansion franchise in Illinois, for the 2014-15 season. … Greg Sponholtz resigned as coach of the Northern Pacific Hockey League’s Tri-Cities Outlaws.
Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.
Starting with the upcoming season, USA Hockey is launching a new online curriculum in our Officiating Education Program. In addition to the standard registration requirements, including application, open and closed book testing and attendance at a USA Hockey Officiating Seminar, every official must complete the online material prior to receiving their card and crest for 2014-15.
The online curriculum is designed to enhance educational experience with accurate and consistent officiating information. The online modules will be broken down into three categories. The first two requirements will include general and level-specific presentations. The third category will have elective courses from a variety of topics such as positioning, procedures, penalty criteria and the mental game. These electives will be level-specific and allow you to hone your officiating skills in areas you select.
The length of each presentation will vary depending on content and focus. The majority of the presentations will fall in the 5- to 10-minute range, followed by a short quiz reviewing the content. The entire online curriculum will take 3-5 hours to complete, depending on the level of the official. The in-person seminar each official will be required to attend will be abbreviated and designed to supplement the material presented in the online curriculum.
Instructions on accessing the online seminar will be sent to you upon receiving your USA Hockey application. The curriculum will be accessed through your USAHockey.com profile and can be completed at your leisure, meaning you can log out and log back in to pick up where you left off. Some presentations are designed to be viewed before attending the seminar as a means to improve the overall seminar experience. These will be highlighted for your consideration.
Officials will find this new system to be beneficial and it will make your overall USA Hockey experience a more valuable one. Let’s get the season off to a great start!