‘This is fun’: Helena Bighorns improve to 23-0, sweep Gillette Wild in front of more than 1,700 fans

Dec 6, 2021

(News article published by the Helena Independent Record, photo by gmarsall_photos)


HELENA  Oh, so you thought Friday night’s season-record crowd that watched the Helena Bighorns’ win was a big one? Well now try adding roughly 200 more people to the announced attendance, but probably more like 300 people, and tell me how loud it gets when the Bighorns find the back of the net.

Friday’s game — a battle of unbeatens with the Gillette Wild in town  was probably the biggest game of the season to date, but Helena’s 2-1 win on Saturday night, a victory that finished off the weekend sweep, was likely equally as important. The Bighorns now have a six-point advantage (46-40) over the second-place Wild in the Frontier Division and are still undefeated at 23-0.

“It’s a huge boost for our team,” Helena head coach Damon Hanson said. “Any time you can get four points against a good team like Gillette is really crucial for us…We came to work tonight. It was a hard game last night, hard game tonight and they pulled it off. They stuck together and they got the job done.”

For the third consecutive game, the Bighorns set a season-record for attendance. The official number for Saturday night’s contest was 1,725, but in all honesty, it felt like more than 1,800 people were on hand to witness a hockey game that Helena led from the middle of the second period on.

“They have a local team that is really good, really fun to watch. We’ve added the video board. It’s just an exciting place to be and I think the word is getting around. It starts with having really good young men here, high-character guys that can score goals. They’re fun to watch.”

Adam Harvey set the crowd into a frenzy when his shot found the back of the net on a power play in the second period. It was Harvey’s 14th goal of the season and put Helena up 1-0.

“We had a power play,” Harvey said. “Taber Gutschick made a great pass to me. I saw nobody in front of me, so I just wound up, took a one-timer, and next thing I know it’s in the back of the net.”
Johnathan Peterson followed about 12 minutes later with his own power play goal off the assist from Harvey and Samuel Feamster.

“There’s times you can’t hear yourself think, especially when we put one in the back of the net,” Gutschick said of the crowd. “They’re awesome. They stayed loud for us the entire night. They had our back.”