West Bend, WI – The West Bend Power are readying up for their first home-and-away series of the year against Central Division rival, the Oregon Tradesmen. The home game, on Friday Oct. 6 celebrates International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) World Girls Hockey Weekend in conjunction with the Washington County Youth Hockey Association LYNX Girls program, sponsored by Eileen Voigt, Thrivent Financial. West Bend’s first away game of the season takes place the following night on Saturday, Oct. 7 at Oregon Ice Arena. Both contests start at 7:30pm CST.
Down go the Champions
The Power swept the defending Fraser Cup Champion Granite City Lumberjacks Friday Sept. 29, and Saturday Sept. 30. Despite getting outshot 21-14 through the second period Friday night, West Bend held a 2-1 lead going into the third period. After Granite City tied the game 2-2 at 11:50 in regulation, Power Head Coach Jason Woods called his timeout. Following an impassioned speech, the West Bend players evened the game on Carter Daul’s first NA3HL goal, at 16:46, sending the game to a shootout after a scoreless overtime. In the sixth round of the shootout, captain Connor O’Neal lasered the game winner for the Power, clinching a 3-2 win.
On Saturday, goaltender Adam Prokop returned to West Bend after leading the team in net last season. Prokop started his first game of the year and anchored a 36 save, 2-1 win where he was thoroughly tested. Again, the Power were outshot after two periods 25-17, and the game was tied 1-1 before the start of the third period. Granite City dialed up a well-executed forecheck for twelve minutes, before Coach Woods used his timeout at nearly the same point in Friday’s win. West Bend again rallied, and O’Neal scored the game winning goal two nights in a row for a 2-1 victory.
“This weekend is another great opportunity against Oregon. It’s going to be interesting to see how we react to a road game Saturday after a home game Friday. Oregon always presents a real tough challenge, and we will need to rise to the occasion all weekend,” said Power Head Coach Jason Woods.
Across the Aisle
Oregon has won every game this season except their loss on Sept. 16 versus West Bend. The Tradesmen have only played twice since the Power’s 9-1 win, both victories coming at home versus the Wausau Cyclones. Oregon’s lone goal scorer on Sept. 16, Tyler Steuck, has at least a point in all four Tradesmen games. Steuck also collected 6 penalty minutes in that same span. Jordan Larkee is the current assist leader on Oregon with 4 and was the secondary assist on Steuck’s tally. Goaltender Tyler Fromolz looked solid in his second start of the year, following Sept. 16. On Sept. 29, Fromolz won his first game of the season stopping 32 of 33 shots versus Wausau in a 2-1 win. As his backup on West Bend’s opening night, Samuel Pollard entered after the fourth Power goal at 1:33 in the second period. Despite allowing five goals on 28 shots, Pollard looked technically sound and could be an equal part in the Tradesmen goalie rotation.
The game will be broadcast on NAHL TV – www.nahltv.com.