The xHelena Bighorns had a three-goal lead after two periods and cruised the rest of the way en route to an 8-3 win over the xGillette Wild.
xHelena got the win behind a great game by Dylan Webster, who had two goals and one assist. Webster scored the first of his two goals on the power play at 5:32 into the first period to make the score 3-1 xHelena. The Bighorns had gained a power play chance when Dalton McCann was whistled for hooking. Nick Okada provided the assist. Webster\’s next tally on the power play made the score 5-1 xHelena with 11:04 left in the first period. xHelena had gotten the advantage when xGillette\’s Brandon Miller was sent off for tripping. Okada assisted on the tally.
The Bighorns\’ penalty kill excelled, as xHelena gave up one goal despite allowing 10 power plays.
The Bighorns forced their penalty killing units to work especially hard during the game, picking up 11 minors and one major for 27 minutes in penalty time. xHelena surpassed its season average of 20.0 penalty minutes per game. The Bighorns forced Wild\’s netminders to work hard to keep the puck out of the net, ripping 39 shots and forcing 31 saves. Michael Kitts made four stops and Sean Kelley made 27.
xHelena additionally got points from Sebastian Hansson, who also had one goal and two assists to lead the team in points. Others who scored for xHelena included Corbin Belling, who had two and Austin Loes, Ryan Webber, and Matt Mohar, who scored one goal each. In addition, xHelena received assists from Austin Buckholtz, who had two and Theo Campe, John Bonta, Damon Hanson, Parker Olson, Brandt Miller, Sam Bratten, and Kyle Baker, who contributed one a piece.
The Wild kept xHelena\’s goalie busy throughout the game, and Austin Brihn made 40 saves on 43 shots.
xGillette was led by Will Fobair, who grabbed one goal and one assist. Fobair scored 50 seconds into the first period to make the score 1-0 xGillette. Bryce Mitzel picked up the assist. xGillette also had goals scored by Greg Sauers and Tj McMinn, who each put in one. Other players who recorded assists for xGillette were Tyler Reble and Darren Banks, who each chipped in one.
The Bighorns registered three goals on nine power play opportunities. The Wild incurred 22 minutes in penalty time with 11 minors.