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Bozeman Splits Weekend Series

By Merrick Parnell

Bozeman Splits this Weekend The Bozeman Icedogs rebounded from a 5-0 loss at home this past Friday to the first place Great Falls Americans to beat the Butte Cobras 7-2 on the road in Butte. Hazen McKay brought his goal count to 44 goals on the year after a hat trick performance. Jacob May, Connor Fuchs and Luke McKay all notched a goal each for the Icedogs. Bozeman blitzed Butte from the get-go, finishing with 100 shots on goal.

Dominic Canic and Gage Blatter chipped in with three assists of their own apiece.

“It was important for us to rebound against Butte and get the season sweep after a tough loss to Great Falls.” said Canic. AJ Ruskowski made 28 saves in net for Bozeman to pick up his eighth win on the year.

Rainer Green picked up his first win as head coach, as he was standing in for Elliot Bates for one game. Green played a chunk of his junior Career in Butte for the Cobras when they played in the Western States Hockey League.

“There were a lot of nerves and emotions being back in Butte and making my head coaching debut,” said Green. As soon as the puck dropped I was able to settle in and start feeling comfortable running the bench. The boys from the second the puck dropped had my back and were very receptive from the start. It was an unreal experience for me.”

Bozeman takes on the second place Helena Bighorns next weekend in Helena in a pivotal matchup, as Bozeman looks to shorten the gap in their chase for second place. Montana State Runs into Tough Competition in the Playoffs

 

Bozeman Blanks Butte

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By Merrick Parnell

The Bozeman Icedogs dominated the Butte Cobras by a score of 10-0 on Friday night at the Hayes Pavilion in Bozeman.

Hazen McKay and Gage Blatter led the team in scoring with two goals each, and Luke Hartge started his Icedogs career with four assists, after being traded recently from the Yellowstone Quake.

The Bozeman Defense stiffiled the Cobras, allowing just 12 shots, while Bozeman Goalie AJ Ruskowski earned his second shutout and 7th win of the season.

“It was a good team win. Everyone chipped in up and down the lineup,” said Ruskowski. “We had a couple new faces that stepped in and helped out right away. Our Defensive core played great and made my job very easy.”

The Icedogs’ next home game will be February 8th against the top-ranked Great Falls Americans. That game will face-off at 7:30 pm.

Icedogs Winning Streak Stopped by Bighorns

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By Merrick Parnell

The Bozeman Icedogs’ winning streak was halted at 6 games at the hands of the Helena Bighorns.

On Friday night in Helena, the Bighorns beat Bozeman 3-0. The first and third periods was where Helena found the back of the net, as Bozeman’s defense was able to shut out the high powered Big Horn offense in the second. Cam Mcintosh got the start in net for the Icedogs, finishing with 29 saves on 32 shots.

“I thought we played a good game but still didn’t put our best out there,” said Defenseman, Connor Fuchs. “The game kinda put a bad taste in our mouths, and we are looking forward to seeing them again soon.”

The Icedogs will return home for a game against the Butte Cobras on Friday at the Hayes Pavillion. Bozeman won the last game between the two clubs 8-1.

Butte Faces off Against Gillette

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By Merrick Parnell

The Butte Cobras stunned the Gillette Wild on the road in Wyoming on Friday night by blasting off to a 3-0 lead.

Bryce Gould would net the game’s opening goal in the first, while Nolan Samples and Daniel Bazarin would score in the second.  Karl Zodda would stay busy in the Cobra net, as he made 54 saves on a blitzkrieg of Wild shots.

However, Gillette would score their first goal midway through the second period and shift the momentum, potting four unanswered goals and ultimately winning the tilt by a score of 4-3.

“In Friday ’s game, we dominated up until the third period. Our effort level went down, and they were able to put a couple in the net early in the third to tie the game, and eventually go onto win.” said Samples.

On Saturday, Butte fell 10-1 to Gillette. Wyatt Haakenson would score Butte’s goal late in the third period.

Butte’s next game will be against the Great Falls Americans at home on  Saturday

Icedogs Win 6th Straight

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By Merrick Parnell

The Bozeman Icedogs won their sixth straight game over the weekend with an 8-1 home win over the Butte Cobras at Hayes Pavillion.  

From the drop of the puck, Bozeman’s offense jumped out to a blistering start, with a goal from Nash Pine just 30 seconds into the first, and another goal from Rhys Phelps following later in the frame. Butte’s lone goal would come early in the second, but the Icedogs would cruise from there, potting six unanswered goals.  

Phelps finished with a hat trick and an assist on the night to lead the Icedogs, while Defenseman Connor Fuchs would put up five assists.  Goalie Mikael Levokari would make 38 saves, picking up his sixth straight win and 15th win on the season.

“It was a good team win. We’re trying to be better and better each game and get a little momentum going into February and the rest of the season,” said Levokari.

Bozeman has been playing some of their best hockey as of late, as their winning streak stretches back to December of 2018. The Icedogs take on the Helena Bighorns on Friday the 25th on the road. The Bighorns come into the game with a three-game losing streak.

 

Cobras Bested by  the Top Ranked Great Falls Americans

cobrasThe Butte Cobras squared up against the first place Great Falls Americans this past weekend for a two-game series.

Friday saw an 8-0 Great Falls victory in Great Falls. Butte Goalie Karl Zodda would stop 64 shots from Great Falls.

“As a team, we need to continue to string together the positives and battle through the adversity,” said Zodda

On Saturday, after a two-goal lead to end the first period, Tyson Stovin would score on a pass from Robin Bagley to bring the game to 2-1. Karl Zodda would have another 64 save the night, but the Americans would win 6-1 at the Butte Community Ice Center.

“We did a lot of good things and we did a lot of bad things this weekend,” said Head Coach Chris Shadow. “When we played hard and physical, we created time and space which we did good things with. We need a good week of practice with a good compete level to prove to ourselves we can do it.”

The Cobras will face the Missoula Bruins at home and then the Bozeman Icedogs on the road next weekend.

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Icedogs Sweep Yellowstone in 2018-2019 Season

By Merrick Parnell

Bozeman won its fifth straight game on Friday night, beating the Yellowstone Quake 4-1 in North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) Frontier League action.

The win marked the end of the regular season series between the two clubs, with the Icedogs coming away undefeated against the Quake in the 2018-2019 campaign.

“The team was super proud of accomplishing a season sweep, especially the returning guys from last year’s season,” said forward Duncan McGarrah. “It was a proud moment for everyone. We just got to keep the momentum rolling for the rest of the month and into February.”

The Icedogs offense was relentless, as they blasted 55 shots at the Quake netminder. Sterling Morin led the scoring charge with a two-goal performance. Luke McKay and McGarrah would each drive in a goal, and Nash Pine and Connor Fuchs notched two assists apiece.

Defensively, Bozeman had a solid showing, shutting out Yellowstone scoring for nearly the entire game. The Quake would not score until the last part of the third period. Mikael Levokari Of The Icedogs would have another strong showing in net, making 32 saves on 33 shots.

Bozeman still sits in third place in the standings, but are gaining ground on the second place Helena Bighorns and the first place Great Falls Americans. The Icedogs will look to push their winning streak further next week as they take on the Butte Cobras on home ice next weekend on the 19th.

Buzzer-Beating Bozeman Bests Bruins

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By Merrick Parnell, Northern Hockey News

With under a second left in the final period, Bozeman’s Connor Fuchs took the puck and fired into the Missoula Bruins net, giving the Icedogs a nail-biting 3-2 win on the road this past Friday.

“It was pretty exciting with a lot of luck, Sterling (Morin) was able to rush the puck up in the final seconds and get a whistle with 5 seconds to go. He won the faceoff to  (Brock) Finn, who just threw it on the net, and I was lucky enough to be there for the tap-in,” said Fuchs, who then described the goal as “one of the craziest goals I’ve scored in my life.”

Morin and Finn would also have goals for Bozeman, and Duncan McGarrah would lead the team with two assists. Staring goalie Mikael Levokari earned the win in net for Bozeman, stopping 27 shots.

On Saturday, the Icedogs would complete the sweep over the Bruins with a defining 5-2 win on home ice. Dan Davis would net a hat trick for the Icedogs, his first 3 tallies of the season. Teammate Adam Franklin would chip in Bozeman’s other two goals. Levokari would again pick up the win as the Bozeman goalie, stopping 37 pucks.

 

“I’m very happy with how the boys are battling through adversity,” said Bates We’re stilling putting wins together with our injuries and have multiple guys stepping up!”

On New Years Eve, the Icedogs topped the Yellowstone Quake 4-2. The Icedogs are riding a 4 game winning streak, going 4-0-1 in their last five games. Their one ovetime loss came against the Great Falls Americans. The Icedogs will look to build on their streak on the January 11th against the Quake, at home at the Hayes Pavilion.

Bozeman Splits in Post-holiday Return

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By Merrick Parnell

The Bozeman Icedogs returned from the holiday break by earning a split over the weekend.

On Friday, the Icedogs took the Great Falls Americans, the second place team in the North American 3 Hockey League’s Frontier division, to overtime, but the Americans ultimately won 4-3.

Connor Fuchs, Duncan McGarrah and Brock Fin would have the goals for Bozeman, while Hazen McKay had two assists.  Fin had Bozeman’s tying goal in the third period. Bozeman newcomer Sterling Morin had two assists.

The Icedogs defense shut out the Americans in the third period and Bozeman goalie Mikael Levokari made 70 saves in the game.

The Icedogs rebounded on Saturday night, beating the Yellowstone Quake 4-1. Morin would score two goals for Bozeman, McGarrah added another, and Dalton Heimer scored his first junior hockey goal. In total, Bozeman would launch 48 shots on net. Levokari picked up the win in net for Bozeman, stopping 19 of 20 shots.  

Cobras go 2-0-1 at League Showcase

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The Butte Cobras had a successful trip to the North American 3 Hockey Leagues Showcase in Minnesota, going 2-1. The Cobras opened the event with a 5-3 win over the Evansville Thunderbolts, as Butte’s Tyson Stovin lead the scoring with a hat trick and one assist performance. Joe Erickson and Dan Liner had Butte’s two other goals, and goalie Karl Zoda made 24 saves.

Butte’s next game was a 2-1, overtime loss to the Willmar Warhawks, but Butte would rebound and cruise to a thrilling 6-5 Overtime win against the Niagra Powerhawks. Ben Dirks would score a hat-trick for the Cobras, and Charles Blandin chipped in another two goals.

Butte’s next home games will be the 28th and 29th of December against the Missoula Bruins and Great Falls Americans.

Bozeman Takes on Great Falls in Last Game Before Showcase

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After a sweep last weekend over the Missoula Bruins and Yellowstone Quake, the Bozeman Icedogs returned to action for the last time before the North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) showcase in Minnesota and then the ensuing holiday break.

On Friday, the Icedogs took on the second-ranked Great Falls Americans on the road in Great Falls.

The Icedogs struck first after Dominic Canic netted the game’s first goal in the opening period. As a result, the Icedogs head into the first intermission up 1-0 on the scoresheet.  Great Falls evened up the score 5 minutes into the 2nd, as both sides traded goals in the middle frame and ended the period tied at 2. However, Great Falls pulled away in the third period with three unanswered goals to take the game 5-2. Mikael Levokari made 51 saves in net for Bozeman, as opposite netminder Drew Scites finished with 33.

The Icedogs will head off to Minnesota for the NA3HL’s annual showcase. The Icedogs play the Skyland Kings, Oswego Stampede and New England Stars in the league’s premier showcase event that will be attended by top scouts from colleges and higher level junior teams.

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#1 Helena Tops Butte in Final Game Before the Showcase


In the last game before the North American 3 Hockey League’s showcase in Minnesota, the Butte Cobras faced off against the Helena Bighorns. Helena entered the contest with a 22-2 record and is currently sitting in first place in the Frontier Division.
“The first period we battled hard, got a lot of shots and played physically, but we gotta stop pucks better and find scoring opportunities,” said Cobras Assistant coach Josh Smith.

Helena would jump to an early lead in the first, but Butte would answer with Tyson Stovin goal. Helena’s offense ignited to score five more goals in the game and take the win 6-1. Karl Zodda, Butte’s starting goalie, would make 57 saves on the night, taking first star honors, while his teammates Tyson Stovin would collect the second star of the game and Charles Blandin earned third.

The Cobra’s next few games will be in Minnesota as part of the NA3HL Showcase. At the Showcase, they will play: Evansville, Niagra, and Willmar. For more info, check out buttecobras.com

Butte Takes on Missoula and Great Falls

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On Friday, the Butte Cobras battled the Great Falls Americans, who sit in second place in the North American 3 Hockey League’s (NA3HL) Frontier Division.

Butte would hold the high powered Americans to just one goal at the end of the first period and would answer with a tying goal of their own early in the second from Tyson Stovin. Butte’s goalie, Karl Zodda would make 42 saves, but the Cobras ultimately fell 9-1.

Zodda would make 42 plus saves in both of the Cobras games over the weekend. On Saturday, Zodda made 49 saves against the Missoula Bruins in a 5-0 loss.

 

“I thought we had some positives come out of the weekend, our special teams were working a little better than the past few games and we played a lot more physical than we have been. We will be working on blocking shots and getting pucks to the net this week in practice,” said Butte Assistant Coach, Josh Smith.

The Cobras next home game is against the division-leading Helena Big Horns at the Butte Community Ice Center on December 13th.  The Cobras then hit the road for the NA3HL’s Showcase in Minnesota.

 

Bozeman  Icedogs Sweeps in Back to Back Series

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For the second time in two weeks, the Bozeman Icedogs swept their North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) Frontier Division opponents. On Friday night, the Icedogs topped the Missoula Bruins 5-2 and the Yellowstone Quake 4-3 on Saturday.

After Hazen McKay’s goal early in the first period, the Icedogs would jump out and go on a 3 un-answered goal-scoring streak against the Bruins as Duncan McGarrah would blast in two goals in the period. McKay would add two more goals in the third period to solidify the 5-2 win

Dominic Canic would lead the club with three assists, bringing his season total to 45 assists.

Mikael Levokari would make 30 saves on the evening in net for the Icedogs. Levokari has a 9-2 record thus far in the 2018-2019 campaign.

On Saturday, the Icedogs would stave off a late-game surge from the Yellowstone Quake that saw a Canic overtime winning goal.

“It was nice to get the overtime win, but we let the game get away from us for a bit due to a few mental lapses,” said Canic. “I thought we did a good job responding after their tying goal.”

The Icedogs sit in third place in the Frontier Division with a 15-7 record. The Icedogs trail the second place Great Falls Americans by just 6 points in the standings, and they will take on the Americans December 14th in Great Falls.

“It was great to pick up another two wins and sweep the weekend. I think as a group we know that it wasn’t our best hockey, and we definitely have lots to work to do,” said Assistant Coach, Rainer Green. But I’m really proud of how far this group has come already this year and I’m looking forward to playing Great Falls and then heading to the NA3HL showcase in Minnesota.

Bozeman’s next home game after the break will be December 28th against the Americans in a huge showdown.

Butte  Cobras Battles Gillette

 

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By Merrick Parnell

The Butte Cobras traveled to Gillette, Wyoming for a two-game set against the Gillette Wild. On Friday, the Cobras would lose 5-0.  Butte goalie, Sean Leonard would make 51 saves in the contest.

On Saturday, Butte would jump out to an early lead, as Charles Blandin would score late in the first period. Butte would go up 2-0 in the second period after Robin Bagley would net another goal.  Gillette would counter with five unanswered goals. Goalie, Karl Zodda would stop 78 shots in the game for the Cobras.

The Cobras will take on the Great Falls Americans at home next weekend, December 7th and then will head to Missoula to play the Bruins on Saturday the 8th.

 

Bozeman Upsets First Place Helena

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By Merrick Parnell


The Helena Bighorns came into Saturday Night’s contest with an impressive  20-1 record and sat in first place in the North American 3 Hockey League’s Frontier Division. However, this past Saturday, the Icedogs shocked the Frontier Division with a definitive 5-2 win over the Big Horns on home ice.

Bozeman’s offensive was hot since the opening puck drop, as Duncan Mcgarrah and Connor Fuchs would score the games’ opening goals in the first period and Hazen McKay would net another in the second period.

The Icedogs defense would jump all over the Big Horn offense, stifling the top-ranked team and shutting them down. Helena did not tally on the scoreboard until late in the 3rd period.  

Bozeman’s Isaac Smoldon and Dominic Canic would round out the Bozeman Blitzkrieg Of scoring, with two goals of their own in the third and final frame.

“We wanted to play a full 60 against Helena for the first time this year, and I think from top to bottom every single guy showed great effort last night,” said Canic.  “The special teams battle was huge for us, going 2/3 on the power play and shutting them down on the penalty kill.”

On Friday, the Icedogs smacked the Yellowstone Quake 7-1 in Cody, Wyoming. Seven different Icedogs would score in the game, and Fuchs led the club in assists with 4.

Next weekend the Icedogs will take on the Bruins on Friday and Yellowstone on Saturday. Both games are at 7:30 pm at the Hayes Pavillion

 

 

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Bozeman Splits Weekend Series

By Merrick Parnell


The Missoula Bruins are the hottest team in the North American Hockey League’s (NA3HL) Frontier Division and, coming into Saturday’s game against the Bozeman Icedogs, the Bruins had won five straight games, including a big upset against the second-place Great Falls Americans.

The Icedogs came within an overtime period goal of completing back to back weekend sweeps in the Frontier Division and ending the Bruins Streak. However, Missoula’s Misha Akatonov scored the overtime winning goal midway through the bonus frame, and the Icedogs would lose 5-4.  

Gage Blatter would have two goals for the Icedogs, while Dominic Canic and Duncan McGarrah chopped in with a goal apiece. Canic would also finish the game with three assists, giving him an impressive 39 for his season total.   Bozeman Goalie AJ Ruskowski would make 42 saves in the game against Missoula.

The Icedogs got 3 out of the four possible points in the standings this weekend to keep them in third place.

On Friday, the Icedogs topped the Butte Cobras 4-0 on home ice. Hazen McKay led the Icedogs with a two-goal, one assist game, and Canic would lead the club in assists with 4.

“I thought we played a pretty good game Friday and generated a lot of offense,” said Canic. “Definitely could’ve prevented some of the shots we gave up, but our goalie did a great job of not letting them get back into the game.”

The Icedogs will take on the Yellowstone Quake next weekend in Cody, Wyoming. The Icedogs have won their last two games against the Quake.

Icedogs Complete Weekend Sweep

By Merrick Parnell, Northern Hockey News

The Bozeman Icedogs completed the weekend sweep with wins against the Yellowstone Quake and the Butte Cobras on Friday and Saturday.

On Friday, on home ice at the Hayes Pavilion, the Icedogs broke the 0-0 tie after Hayden Groth scored midway through the second period. Hazen McKay would add two more in the game (his second came in the third period) and the Icedogs defense held the Quake to a single goal in the 3-1 win. Yellowstone was limited to just 2 shots in the second period, and starting goalie AJ Ruskowski would stop 22 shots overall.

“I thought the team played well. Our D [defense] core did a good job of limiting Yellowstone’s chances, which made my job a lot easier. Yellowstone is a hardworking team and they really tested us Friday night,” said Ruskowski. “It was not an easy win, and we had to battle for the two points. But in the end, it was a good all-around team win, and it’s was good to come out on top.”

The Icedogs would go on to top the Butte Cobras 8-3 in Butte on Saturday. The Icedogs opened the game with 4 goals in the first period, one in the second and three in the third.

Three different Icedogs had multiple-goal games, as Connor Fuchs, Nash Pine and Isaac Smoldon had two goals apiece. Brock Finn and Groth rounded out the score sheet with a goal each. Duncan Mcgarrah and Fin notched two assists and Groth added another.  

“It feels good to get back in the win column. We still have some things to clean up, but we do have a lot of positives to take from it,” said Bozeman’s Head Coach, Elliot Bates. “We had a number of players step up this weekend which was great to see.”

The Icedogs would launch 60 shots on the Butte Cobra net. Tyson Stovin had two goals for the Cobras, and Bryce Gould would have the third goal for Butte.

After the two wins, Bozeman still remains in third place in the North American 3 Hockey League’s Frontier Division.

Cobras Fight Hard Against Missoula and Bozeman

By Merrick Parnell

The Butte Cobras would drop two hard-fought games to top opponents over the weekend.  

On Friday, the Cobras lost 9-2 against the Missoula Bruins. Charles Blandin and Trevor Stokes would score the two goals for Butte, and Karl Zodda made an impressive 59 saves.

Vadim Zubkov would have five goals for the Bruins, and Trevor Price led the team with five assists.

On Saturday, the Cobras then lost 8-3 to Bozeman. Tyson Stovin would lead the Cobras with two goals, and Bryce Gould chipped in one more, while Cobras Goalie Sean Leonard would stop 60 shots.

The Cobras will play in Bozeman this next weekend on November 23rd at the Hayes Pavilion. For more info check out buttecobras.com


Bozeman Returns Home from Road Trip against Top Competition

By Merrick Parnell, Northern Hockey News

The Bozeman Icedogs hit the road this past weekend for two tough games against the top teams in the North American 3 Hockey League’s Frontier Division.

On Friday, the Icedogs took on the second place Bighorns, who came into the game with a 15-1 record, and Saturday’s game pitted Bozeman against the top-ranked, Great Falls Americans.

The Icedogs dropped a hotly contested 5-3 game to Helena. The Icedogs would shut the Bighorns out in the first period, which was a large task given Helena’s high powered offense. Hazen McKay would rifle in the first goal of the game in the second period on a Dominic Canic pass. Helena would counter with two goals of their own in the second, and would add three more in the game’s final frame.  Duncan McGarrah scored his first goal of the season since returning to the Icedogs, and McKay would notch one more goal in the final period. The Icedogs peppered 52 shots on the Helena goalie, Alex Rogers, but Rogers ended the game with 49 saves. Ultimately Helena sent three more pucks into the Bozeman net, sealing the 5-3 victory.

Bozeman goalie, AJ Ruskowski made 47 saves in Saturday’s game against the Great Falls Americans, but the Icedogs would lose 5-1. Isaac Smoldon would score Bozeman’s only goal in the first period off an assist from McGarrah.  

Bozeman remains in third place in the Frontier division, one game ahead of the Gillette Wild. The Icedogs’ next game on November 16th will be against the Yellowstone Quake at home at 7:30, and then in Butte on November 17th against the Cobras.  

Cobras Challenge Wild

By Merrick Parnell, Northern Hockey News

The Butte Cobras gave the Gillette all that they could handle on Saturday night in Butte.

With the sour taste of a 6-1 loss on Friday night, Butte scored the game’s opening goal on at the 13-minute mark after Charles Blandin scored on a Dan Liner pass. The Butte defense would be tenacious in the first period as they shut out the Wild.

Gillette found the score sheet in the second period, and would carry the momentum of their first goal to tack on the tieing marker in the third and final period, sending the game to overtime, where eventually Austin Newson broke the tie with his overtime goal.

Karl Zodda would have another stellar performance in net, stopping 58 shots. Since joining the Cobras, Zodda has 3 straight games with over 50 saves. Butte’s Head Coach Chris Shadow was happy about his team’s perseverance in the tightly contested contest.  

“We are taking a lot of positive steps. Adding in some key players and continuing to get better is our main goal right now,” said Shadow. “We have shown great resilience through some injuries and keep building on our team character. That’s what we need moving forward”

Butte will regroup this week and prepare for two tough matchups this coming weekend against the Missoula Bruins and Bozeman Icedogs.

 

Icedogs Split Home Series with Wild

By Merrick Parnell, Northern Hockey News

The Bozeman Icedogs split their weekend series against the Gillette Wild at the Hayes Pavilion arena in Bozeman.

The split is the second one in a week for the Icedogs, as Bozeman split with the Wild last weekend in Gillette, and 3 out of the four recent games between the two clubs went to overtime.

Friday’s series opener would see a commanding 6-2 win over the Wild. Hazen McKay ignited the Icedogs offense, burning in 4 goals and racking up 2 assists. The effort earned him first star honors.  Connor Fuchs gashed the Wild with 4 assists and a goal, Dominic Canic added another 4 assists, and Brock Fin would notch his second goal of the year.

“Our game plan was just to keep the energy up and let the chips fall into place,” said Fuchs. “Our team had a full 60-minute effort which showed on the ice and the scoreboard.”

While the Bozeman offense blitzed Gillette with six unanswered goals, the Icedog defense would hold the Wild to just two goals.

Gillete’s first goal would come at the 13:15 mark of the first period, and they then struck again in the third. Mikael Levokari would continue his goaltending performance with 36 saves on 38 shots, on his way to his fourth win of the year.


Motivated by their game one loss on Friday, the Wild would jump out and score their first goal of the game in the first period on a Gage Thompson goal at 11:56. McKay would even the affair with a Bozeman goal early in the second, setting the pace for a back and forth battle that featured hard shots (and even harder hits) as both teams flew around the rink on a mission.  Austin Newson would score the go-ahead goal for Gillette after taking a Nolan Conrad pass and wrisitng a shot from atop the faceoff circle.

Eager to knot things up, Bozeman seized a scoring chance in the third as McKay would take a pass from Canic and bury it in the back of Wild’s net.

The game would go into overtime, but the Icedogs would be down to a 4 on 3 penalty kill after taking a late penalty in the 3rd. Gillette would score the game-winning goal in overtime at just under a minute into the extra frame.


“On Friday’s game we played a full 60 min. The energy on the bench was great and the boys kept building off it,” said Bozeman Head Coach Elliot Bates. “On Saturday we didn’t have the energy like we did. We need to be able to bring it every night.”

The series split puts the Icedogs at 8-5 on the year and in third place in the Frontier Division.  Gillette remains in fourth place with a 5-7 record. Bozeman will take on the Frontier Divison’s top two teams next weekend with games in Helena and Great Falls.  

Butte Takes on Missoula

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By Merrick Parnell, Northern Hockey News

Butte Goalie Karl Zodda would make 59 saves against the Missoula Bruins on Friday, but the Cobras ultimately would lose 7-3 at the Glacier Ice Rink in Missoula, Montana.   

However, the game began in fast fashion as both teams ended at 1-1 at the end of the first period.

Carsten Quam, Alec Sorby, and Joe Erickson would notch the goals for Butte, while Lewallen Newman and Tyson Stovin would have one assist each.

Last weekend’s series against the Yellowstone Quake saw a split, highlighted with an 8-7 win on Friday night.  Bryce Gould recorded a hat trick, while Butte local, Robin Bagley had his third goal of the season and added two assists.

Butte will next face Gillette, who is coming off a series with the Bozeman Icedogs in Butte (see above). Both of those games against the Wild will be in Butte at the Community Ice Center on Friday and Saturday.

Bozeman Splits in Gillette

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Photo: Bozeman Icedogs

By Merrick Parnell

In game one on Friday, the Bozeman Icedogs found themselves on the winning side of a 5-4 overtime game against the Gillette Wild in Gillette, Wyoming.

Brock Finn scored the overtime winner for the Icedogs, and simultaneously recorded his first Junior Hockey career goal with that same marker.

“Scoring my first junior goal felt great! Now I can progress from it and keep putting up points,“ said Finn. “We battled long and hard, made a comeback, and fought all the way till the end.“

The Icedogs would come from behind to rally in the third period after being down 4-2, with goals coming from Dominic Canic at the 9:21 mark and a Gage Blatter tally at 15:09 in the final frame. Canic would finish with two goals on the night which would lead all Bozeman goal scoring.  Brady Kellerman and Finn had  two assists each, and Bozeman goalie AJ Ruskowski would make 33 saves.

The Icedogs would drop Saturday’s game 2-1 in overtime.  Despite the loss, Bozeman sits in third place in the North American 3 Hockey League’s (NA3HL) Frontier Division behind Great Falls and Helena.

“We need to be more consistent,” said Bozeman Head Coach Elliot Bates. “We showed some great promise at times this weekend, but need to put together a full 60 minutes.”

Bozeman will have another shot at Gillette, this time at home this coming weekend. Both games will face off at 7:30 at the Hayes Pavilion.

Bozeman Gets Back in Win Column

10/24/18

By Merrick Parnell

The Bozeman Icedogs returned to their winning ways after taking both their games this past weekend (the first being  against the Butte Cobras at home, and the second being against the Yellowstone Quake on the road) in Wyoming.

On Friday October 20th, the Icedogs topped the Cobras 5-0 on home ice. Nash Pine opened up the scoring at the 4:58 mark, when he connected on a pass from Isaac Smoldon. Gage Blatter led the way with two goals, and defenseman Connor Fuchs notched three assists.

“Saturday was the closest we’ve been all year to playing a full 60 minute game. The team had a renewed sense of energy leading into the weekend, and I’m excited to see that carry into this week at practice and into Gillette.” Blatter said.

Bozeman goalie Mikael Levokari earned the shutout in net, stopping 22 shots on his way to earning first star honors.

The Ice Dogs would carry their victory into Saturday’s game in Cody, Wyoming, as they would beat the Yellowstone Quake 8-2. Hazen McKay would have a monster of a game for Bozeman, with a hat-trick and 1 assist for 4 points on the night. Dominic Canic would set up 5 goals with his 5 assists, and Gabe Huntley would score his first two goals of the season.

“I thought my first two goals of the season were pretty good and there’s definitely more to come,” said Huntley. “I try and I help my team by getting down low in the dirty areas and grinding it out.”
Jaxson Dodds would score his first junior hockey goal after putting home a Canic pass, and the Icedogs would blast a total of 71 shots on the Yellowstone net in the win.

After the weekend, the Icedogs once again find themselves in third place in the North American 3 Hockey League’s Frontier Division and will look to keep building momentum this weekend against the Gillette Wild.

 

Butte Cobras Keep Looking to Build

By Merrick Parnell, Northern Hockey News

The Butte Cobras are remaining optimistic despite two losses this weekend. The Cobras dropped a 5-0 decision to the Bozeman Icedogs, and then follow that by losing a 12-1 game to the league-leading Helena Bighorns.

Butte’s goalie Sean Leonard proved to be a bright spot with his 69 saves on Friday night against Bozeman, and Donald Dickens scored his first goal as a Cobra Saturday night against Helena.

“It was a good start to something that is going to be great. We have been playing much better lately and there is much more to come,” said Leonard.

Butte’s General Manager, Bill Lavelle, is excited about the potential that Dickens has.

“Donny [Dickens]  is an aggressive very skilled player with an excellent hockey IQ. His ability to see the play develop adds another level of depth to the team.” Lavelle said.

The Cobras will re-group and build up to this next weekend’s series versus the Yellowstone Quake in Cody, Wyoming, and the Cobras will return home to Butte for two games against Gillette on November 9th and 10th.

 

 

 

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Butte Picks up First Win of the Season

10/15/18

By The Northern Hockey News

Wyatt Haakenson’s goal at the 1:43 mark in the overtime period sealed the Cobra’s 8-7 win over the Yellowstone Quake and gave the Butte club their first win of the season in front of the home crowd at the Butte Community Ice Center

“I was just in the right spot, my teammate [Alec Sorby] made a beautiful pass and all I had to do was tap it in 2. I think everyone’s performance contributed to that win, we were capitalizing on a lot of our chances and a few guys put up several points” said Haakenson.

Haakenson would finish with two goals and two assists on the night.  

The Cobras kept the Yellowstone Netminder busy as they blasted 69 shots on net. Cobra Tyson Stovin would find the back of the net three times and assisted on another goal from Haakenson. Stovin’s Hat Trick performance would earn him first star honors on the night.

Goalie, Casey Mattfeldt would finish the game with 59 saves in his first win of the season in between the pipes.  Butte’s Head Coach Chris Shadow was happy about the win for the Cobras and the team effort.

“We competed all night. Everyone in the locker is finally competing together as a team instead of individuals. We battled back after every goal and believed in each other.”

Butte will hit the road next week for a 2 game road trip in Bozeman on Friday night (October 19th) and in Helena on the 20th. Check out buttecobras.com for more info.

 

Bozeman Takes Great Falls to the Wire

10/13/18

By Merrick Parnell

The Bozeman Icedogs took the Great Falls Americans on in a classic battle that would go down to the wire on Thursday, October 11th

Great Falls came into the game in first place in the North American 3 Hockey Leagues’ (NA3HL) Frontier Division with a 8-1 record, with their high powered offense having scored 71 goals in just 11 games. Bozeman blazed out of the gates in the first period, getting a quick goal from Devin Hofmann at the 9:05 mark in the first.  Both teams would battle throughout the game, as both traded chances and goals.

As the battle waged on, Bozeman found themselves down 4-3 in the 3rd.  Bozeman then came within inches of connecting with the equalizing goal after Great Falls took three consecutive penalties.  Nonetheless, Great Falls would score on a late game empty-netter to make it 5-3, and ultimately sealed the deal.

Bozeman Goalie AJ Ruskowski would make 51 saves on the Americans, and Devin Hofmann Would earn third-star honors with his two-goal performance.  Hazen McKay netted Bozeman’s third goal.

On Friday night, the Icedogs dropped a 5-1 decision to the Helena Bighorns. McKay scored Bozeman’s lone goal on the powerplay from Nash Pine and Brock Finn, and Ruskowski finished the game with a 37 save performance.

The Icedogs will next face the Butte Cobras at home on October 18th. The Icedogs lead the Butte Cobras 2-0 in the season series after 13-0 and 8-1 wins in September.

For more info on that game and all things Icedogs, check out https://www.bozemanicedogs.com/

Bozeman Drops Close Road Game

10/8/18

By Merrick Parnell

On Friday, October 5th, the Bozeman Icedogs traveled to Missoula to take on the Junior Bruins for the second time this season. The last time the two clubs met was back in September in the Icedogs second game of the year, a game which Bozeman would take 5-2.

In the rematch, the Icedogs would fall 8-7 in a high scoring back and forth affair. Hazen McKay would have two goals and an assist on the night, while Dan Liner, Nash Pine, and Wyatt Burrell had a goal apiece. Devin Hofmann and Gage Blatter would also contribute a goal each and three assists.  

Missoula’s  Misha Akatnov proved to be a force on Friday, as he skated to a four-goal performance and assisted teammate Ty Dittman in Missoula’s 8th goal. Bozeman Goaltender Mikael Levokari would record 37 saves on the night, while Bruin Goalie Evan Williams would finish with 31 saves.

“We gave up too many quality scoring chances in the D zone and we need to be better in front of our goaltender,”  said Assistant Coach Rainer Green. “Moving forward we need to play a harder and smarter 200-foot game, and good things will happen. Coach Bates and I love the group of guys that we have, and we think we are a very dangerous hockey team when we play a full 3 zone game.”

On Saturday night, the Icedogs would lose 8-2 against the undefeated Helena Bighorns.

The Icedogs return home for a two-game homestand starting this Thursday against the Great Falls Americans, and then this Friday against the Helena Bighorns.  Both of those games will start at 7:30 pm at the Hayes Pavilion in Bozeman.

Ice dogs logo

NA3HL: Bozeman Rebounds to Beat Yellowstone

10/4/18

By Merrick Parnell

After losing to the top-ranked Helena Bighorns on Friday, the Bozeman Icedogs rebounded to a 6-4 road victory against the Yellowstone Quake in Cody, Wyoming Saturday night. Croatian-born Dominic Canic would finish the game with two goals and two assists, while Bozeman local Hazen McKay would record a goal and three assists.

“I’m glad I could chip in and help the team out, but at the end of the day it’s not about personal numbers, it’s about helping the team get the win,” Canic said. “It felt great to get the win against Yellowstone, and to get back to our winning ways.”

Brady Kellerman, Dan Liner and Nash Pine would contribute a goal apiece, and Wyatt Burrell, Gage Blatter and Devin Hofmann would notch two assists each.

The win moves the Icedogs to 4-1 and into third place in the North American 3 Hockey League’s Frontier Division behind Helena and Great Falls. Bozeman’s next game will be on the road against the Missoula Bruins on October 5th.

 

pinePine Picks up Fourth Junior Goal

10/4/18

By Merrick Parnell

Nash Pine netted his fourth goal of the year in Bozeman’s fifth game of the season, as his latest goal came late in the third period to ice the Yellowstone Quake, and give the Bozeman Icedogs a 6-4 win on Saturday. Pine also picked up his second assist of the season after helping set up a first period goal by Brady Kellerman. Pine is excelling in his first year of junior hockey and averages over a point per game in the team’s first five contests. With the win, the Icedogs move to third place in the North American 3 Hockey Leagues’ Frontier Division with a 4-1 record.

 

Ice dogs logo

NA3HL: Bozeman Rebounds to Beat Yellowstone

10/4/18

By Merrick Parnell

After losing to the top-ranked Helena Bighorns on Friday, the Bozeman Icedogs rebounded to a 6-4 road victory against the Yellowstone Quake in Cody, Wyoming Saturday night. Croatian-born Dominic Canic would finish the game with two goals and two assists, while Bozeman local Hazen McKay would record a goal and three assists.

“I’m glad I could chip in and help the team out, but at the end of the day it’s not about personal numbers, it’s about helping the team get the win,” Canic said. “It felt great to get the win against Yellowstone, and to get back to our winning ways.”

Brady Kellerman, Dan Liner and Nash Pine would contribute a goal apiece, and Wyatt Burrell, Gage Blatter and Devin Hofmann would notch two assists each.

The win moves the Icedogs to 4-1 and into third place in the North American 3 Hockey League’s Frontier Division behind Helena and Great Falls. Bozeman’s next game will be on the road against the Missoula Bruins on October 5th.

 

 

Ice dogs logo

Icedogs  Top Cobras in Opener

 

By Merrick Parnell

The Bozeman Icedogs got off to an electric start to the 2018-2019 North American 3 Hockey League Season after a 13-0 win against the Butte Cobras on Saturday in Butte Montana.

Issac Smoldon and Nash Pine recorded hat tricks in the contest for Bozeman, while Hazen McKay, Wyatt Burell, and Dominic Canic notched two goals each. Adam Franklin would also add to the goal total with one of his own, while Hayden Groth, Gage Blatter, and Gabe Huntley found the score sheet with a flurry of assists. In total, the Ice Dogs amassed an impressive 94 shots on the Butte goal. Starting goalie AJ Ruskowski made 30 saves en route to a shutout performance.

Elliot Bates
Coach Elliot Bates after the huge win Photo: Icedogs Facebook


Elliot Bates, Bozeman’s new head coach, was happy about the win in his Icedogs coaching debut.

“It was a great way to start the season,” Bates said. “It was a great morale boost for our returners and got the first game jitters out of the way for the rookies. The camaraderie of the team is refreshing to see as a coach, knowing these players have come from all over.”

The Icedogs know that the work is far from over, and they will practice hard this week to gear up for a good test about Missoula.

“Looking forward to the next game against Missoula, we will need to clean up our game in some areas, but the guys are still eager to learn and continue building off our first game success,” Bates said.

The Icedogs will take on the Missoula Bruins next weekend on the road at the Glacier Ice Arena.

Pine Nets Hat-Trick for Icedogs in Debut

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Bozeman Icedog Nash Pine started off his junior hockey career with a solid showing this weekend in Butte against the Cobras.

The North American 3 Hockey League rookie and Bozeman local recorded a hat trick in his debut, providing a constant offensive threat as the Icedogs would top the Cobras 13-0 in their season opener while putting up a colossal 94 shots on the Butte net.

“We played a great game, to put up 13 goals is quite an accomplishment and to have several points on the score sheet has already boosted my confidence,” said Pine, who hopes to continue providing consistent firepower for the Icedogs who feature several top scorers.

Next week, Bozeman will head into Missoula next week to take on the Missoula Bruins.

Edson and Hinton Joins WSHL’s Provinces Division

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The Edson Aeros and Hinton Wildcats have joined the Provinces division of the Western States Hockey League (WSHL). Both the Aeros and Wildcats will play their inaugural seasons this year and will join the Cold Lake Wings and Meadow Lake Mustangs in the Division.

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Edson Aeros/aeroshockey.ca

 

The Aeros will play their home games at Repsol Place in Edson, Alberta.  “Repsol Place is a great arena, containing seating for almost 1000 people with good visibility throughout,” said President and General Manager Axel Axmann. “We have a fantastic dressing room, hospitality room, and office arena and we’re very happy to be playing out of this ‘ole barn.’”

“Edson is a town of over 8000 people in West Central Alberta, and our club plans to be a huge force in the community, with community integration being a major focal point of the Edson Aeros. Everything we have done with respect to the club at this point has been with the community in mind. From using local businesses to supply us with products and services, to billet families to volunteers and employees have focused around the community.” Axmann said.

The community will get their first chance to support the new club this fall when their inaugural season kicks off.

Vist their website at https://www.aeroshockey.ca for more info

Repsol Place
Repsol Place/edson.ca
Repsol Place/edson.ca

 

 

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Hinton, Alberta’s Murray Rec Center will be the home rink for the Wildcats. Hinton has a population of over 9,000 residents and is located in West Central Alberta, Canada, sitting 176 miles west of Edmonton.

 

Murray Rec Center/hinton.ca

“We are going to play a huge role in the community. Hopefully, it’s what junior hockey is all about,” said General Manager and Head Coach Geoff Walker. “The support we have there is a real buzz and people have been great, so we are really looking forward to getting started.”

Walker has been hard at work this offseason assembling a roster that will be successful. “Fans can expect a team that is going to play with pace and works hard. Our roster is coming together nicely, so we are excited about that,” Walker said. The Wildcats will play their first exhibition game September 14th and will open their regular season October 12th.

Fans can learn more about the Hinton Wildcats by checking out their webpage at https://www.hintonwildcats.ca

NA3HL Releases 2018-2019 Schedule

Photo: NA3HL.com

The North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) has announced their schedule for the upcoming 2018-2019 season. The regular season will open Friday, September, 7th and will conclude in  March. The NA3HL is entering its 10th year as a Junior A, Tier III League. Prior to their Junior A status, the league played at the  Junior B  level from the 1980s-2007.  The NA3HL’s 37 teams span from Maine to Montana and the league includes teams in Texas and the south-east.

You can find the full NA3HL 2018-2019 Schedule at http://na3hl.com/game-center/#/schedule/all-teams/169/all-months?league=2

 

NA3HL Logo NA3HL.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Former Great Falls American Kody Thomas Commits to Montana State University

By Merrick Parnell

Kody Thoams

Former Great Falls Americans Defenseman, Kody Thomas has announced his commitment to Montana State University’s (MSU) Hockey team for the upcoming 2018-2019 season. Thomas who played two seasons with the Americans in the North American Tier III Hockey League (NA3HL) put up 15 goals and 24 assists.

“Junior hockey really highlighted the strengths and weaknesses of my game, and really allowed me to use what I’m good at to develop the rest of my game.” said Thomas. My skill set will help the club all across the ice. I played about 60% of my junior games as a Defenseman and 40% as a Forward, so I excel in being able to play a consistent 200-foot game no matter what position I’m playing.”

Thomas’s Junior hockey experience made him a coveted prospect for MSU and his stock increased after a solid showing at the Mountain West College Exposure Camp in Bozeman this spring.

“Montana State University Hockey is very excited about Kody beginning the next chapter of his hockey career at MSU,” said Montana State University Head Coach, Dave Weaver. “Kody is a very smart hockey player who possesses all the necessary skills to make an impact at this level.”

MSU plays in the American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA) Mountain West Division. This division hosts some of the region’s top Division 2 teams such as Boise State, Weber State, Brigham Young University and several others.

Colvin Signs with the WSHL’s Seattle Totems

Ben Colvin, a native of Snohomish, Washington will return to play Junior Hockey closer to home with the Seattle Jr. Totems of the Western States Hockey League. Colvin’s Junior career has made stops in the USPHL with the Ironwood Yoopers and the KIJHL with the Spokane Braves.

“I’m excited about the new staffing at the totems organization and share their vision and goals for the future,” said Colvin.  “I think it would be great to have a solid junior program in the greater Seattle area to get more kids playing for longer, and I’m looking forward to getting things going.”

Helping with the revamping of the organization is Chad Olson who has been working tirelessly to recruit and sign top talent and also make the Totems the talk of the area. Colvin was high up on the Totems list of prospects.

“Ben is an extremely hard-working goalie who brings a ton of competing and leadership to our family!” said Olson.

With the NHL likely to come to Seattle the Totems can be a significant factor in creating a hockey buzz and exposing North Puget Sounders to the game.  The Totems are looking to have a successful year in the WSHL’s  Northwest Division.

 

 

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Photo: Seattle Totems
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