North Stars beat Melfort and other assorted thoughts

First lets start by breakign down last night’s game. Point form style.

– The Stars opened the scoring when Woody Klassen made a nice rush into the offensive zone. His cross crease pass was deflected into his own net by the unfortunate Cody Brown who I thought had a decent game. Kyle Hall assisted on that goal and scored one himself in the first period which stood up as the game winner. Hall in fact scored all 3 game winners over the weekend. He was outstanding and I thought it was his best stretch of hockey of the season so far. It’s also nice that it came in a couple games where Blake Tatchell found it a bit hard going. Every team and every player goes through stretches where the pucks aren’t bouncing for them. Or they play well and don’t get the rewards. Great to see Hall stepping up and playing real well in games where Tatchell only got a couple points. Chalk that up as good timing.

– The only goal of the second period was scored by Steve Jean for Melfort. His shot may have been going over the net but Graham Hildebrand tried to glove it anyway. He got a piece of it and knocked it into his own net. In 3 games played last week that’s about the only mistake Hildy made. The Stars looked a little leg weary in the period and you wondered if they had run a little low on energy playing so many game in such a short period of time. The second period was when the chirping really started. Mitch Berg got into it with a couple Stars including Captain Travis Sparrow. Godric Tham got into with both Woody Klassen and Bordy Luhning. After the game Coach Hasselberg said it was jus tone of those games. Sometimes a little frustration creeps into a hockey game and tempers boil over.

– So how would the Stars come out in the third? Would they be able to find some juice left in the tank? Yeah they would. The Stars completely shut down the game in the third. They went into lock down defense and allowed just 2 shots threw onto Graham Hildebrand. They also scored twice to really seal the game. Tanner Schwab scored a power play marker as Kyle Hall picked up his 3rd point of the night. The top line then struck late on as Blake Tatchell started a new point streak. He helped setupa goal for Braeden Johnson. That made the final score 4-1. There was a late fight and it was Brody Luhing scoring a decision with a take down over Godric Tham. No surprise he was involved in some fisticuffs.

– Some stats for you. The Stars are now 17-0-0-1 when leading after 40 minutes of play. They have won 26 games already this season in 33 games. That’s as many as they won all of last season. And they have allowed just 4 goals in their last 4 games. And a mind bogglingly low 79 on the season so far in 33 games.

– Woody Klassen had 3 goals and 6 assists over the 4 games played last week. That’s impressive. He’s also got 18 points now in 13 games since returning to the lineup and is up to 7th in league scoring by defensemen. The only reason I don’t think Klassen has a chance to catch the league leader? He plays on the same pair as him. Brody Luhning is leading the league and I don’t think Klassen can catch him. But you never know.

– Graham Hildebrand is now the league leader in wins, goals against average, save percentage and shutouts. He won all 3 games he played last week and allowed just 2 goals in those three contests. Hildy has been amazing this season excluding the first period of the first game of the season. Connor Creech? He’s been the second best goalie in the league this season. He has the misfortune of being on the same team as Hildy in terms of not getting to play as often as he probably deserves. But the North Stars are reaping the benefits of the strong play of both of their tenders. And lets be honest. The team as a lot to do with it as well. It goes both ways. The goalies are playing well behind a team that is playing well defensively.

– Further to the above point the Stars allowed an average of just 20 shots per game over their last 3 wins. Holding Melfort to 2 shots on goal in the third period when they were trying to come from behind in the game is very impressive. Doing it in the third period of their third game in three nights? Outstanding.

– I was going to write more but the league’s website is the worst at announcing player of the week honours quickly and efficiently. So I will have more later when those announcements are made.

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1 Comment

  1. Barb

     /  December 5, 2011

    Very well written! Thanks!

    Reply

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