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First loss stings for Somerset hockey team

Somerset goalie Bryce Hanson (31) pounces on a rebound during Saturday’s game against New Richmond.

The first loss cuts the deepest.

The Somerset hockey team took a 5-0-1 record into Saturday’s renewal of the rivalry with New Richmond.

The Spartans played well in stretches, but undisciplined penalties took their toll as Somerset suffered its first loss of the season, 3-2, on the Spartans’ home ice.

The first period of the game was scoreless. Somerset notched the first goal with 5:14 left in the second period. Aaron Moore got the goal, tipping home a pass from Drew Kelly who found Moore alone at the back edge of the net on a power play.

New Richmond tied the game just over a minute later. The Tigers took a 2-1 lead on a shorthanded breakaway early in the third period. The Spartans tied the game with 2:25 left in regulation, again on the power play. Kelly got the goal, firing a blistering shot from between the circles that cleanly beat Tiger goalie Adam Dilley.

New Richmond got early control of the puck in the overtime and kept play in the Spartans’ zone for much of the time until the Tigers scored 2:10 into the overtime period.

Both teams were called for nine penalties in the game. Somerset coach Dan Gilkerson said killing penalties drained the Spartans’ energy level.

“We took five retaliation penalties. We didn’t have the discipline we needed to have,” Gilkerson said.

Gilkerson said one of the highlights of the game was the play of sophomore goalie Bryce Hanson, who stopped 31 shots in the game.

“Bryce was in the right position and he did a good job of controlling his rebounds,” Gilkerson said.

The loss dropped the Spartans to 1-1 in Middle Border Conference games. The Spartans won their MBC opener last Tuesday when they scored a 9-1 win at Amery.

This game was over early, with the Spartans scoring four times in the first period and adding four more goals in the second period.

Reed Kelly had a five-point game to lead the Spartans, including notching a hat trick. Jake Heyer scored twice for Somerset, with Logan Wiederin, Adam Marty, Drew Kelly and Austin Larson each scoring once.

The Spartans play another MBC game this Thursday when they play at Baldwin-Woodville. The Spartans will also be on the road Saturday, playing at 3 p.m. in Siren against the WSFLG Blizzard.

Dave Newman
Dave Newman has been the sports editor at the New Richmond News since 1988. He has covered the action in the Middle Border Conference, Dunn-St. Croix Conference and Big Rivers Conference for nearly 30 years.
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