Eagles shock Bears

NEW ULM – Wyatt Peterson recorded a hat trick and goalie Brach Kraus stopped 55 of 58 shots as New Ulm surprised The Blake School 7-4 Saturday afternoon in non-conference boys hockey at the New Ulm Civic Center.

Judd Davis, Brandon Helget, Ethan Kraus and Blake Neumann added goals. Cole Dulas and Alex Stark each added two assists with Davis, Neumann and Mitch Neid adding helpers.

Johnny Ferguson, Crey Bankes, Cade Gleekel and Preston Wallin scored for the Bears.

While the win moved New Ulm to 7-7-1 on the season and beat a team that is a perennial power in the Metro area, Eagles’ coach Erik Setterholm was not happy with his team’s performance.

“We did not play that well today,” he said. “And quite honestly I think that we got by with one. We took a lot of stupid penalties and – we had them down 4-1 (47 seconds into the second period) and that is the time that you need to take control of the game and bury them. But we let them slip back in.”

New Ulm fell behind 1-0 when Blake scored on a power play goal from Ferguson at the 3:08 mark.

But the Eagles tied the game at the 10:45 mark on an Ethan Kraus’ power play score on a backhand shot.

New Ulm’s Wyatt Peterson scored two goals less than two minutes apart for a 3-1 lead, beating Bears’ goalie Jackson Norris. While Peterson got the pat on the back, both of his scores were set up by pretty passes from Davis and Neumann.

“I was glad to see Wyatt bury the puck today,” Setterholm said. “He has had some chances in the last couple of games to score but hit the crossbar and has had some bad luck. But today his linemates did a great job of getting him the puck.”

New Ulm wasted little time in making it a 4-1 game just 47 seconds into the second period. With Ferguson in the penalty box for crosschecking, Neumann snuck the puck by Norris for a comfortable three-goal lead.

But that was when the Eagles experienced some difficulties in their own end of the ice.

Bankes and Gleekel each turned New Ulm turnovers in their own end into goals that pulled the Bears to within 4-3 at the five-minute mark of the second period.

“They have some skilled players that can move the puck,” Setterholm said.

Brandon Helget’s score at the 13:19 mark of the second period regained momentum for the Eagles and a 5-3 lead.

Peterson’s third goal – a shorthanded score for New Ulm – increased the New Ulm lead to 6-3 before Davis’ power play goal at the 6:39 mark salted the game away.

But not without some controversy on a penalty call on New Ulm.

On a scramble in front of the New Ulm net on a lose puck, New Ulm goalie Brach Kraus stopped a shot but was given a five minute major – which he had to serve – for contact to the head when one of his blockers made contact with the head of a Blake player who was down on the ice.

“It is the wrong call,” Setterholm said. “That is not the call that you make there – it is a two minute roughing penalty on your goaltender and someone else on the ice serves it.”

Matt Berkner took over for Kraus and allowed a lone goal as New Ulm got a needed win.

“We needed this win to get on the right foot again,” Setterholm said. “We have another tough game Tuesday at home against St. Peter and if we want the (South Central) Conference title, we need to win.”

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