FAIRBANKS—The Monroe Catholic Rams and Hutchison Hawks posted impressive high school wins in Friday’s action at the Hutchison Invitational Tournament and the two teams will battle it out for the title this evening at the Big Dipper Ice Arena.
The Rams skated to a 10-1 win against the Delta Junction Huskies, while the Hawks downed the North Pole Patriots 6-2. Both teams are 2-0 in the round-robin tournament.
The Rams and Hawks will play at 5 p.m. today at the Dipper. It will be the first meeting between the two teams since Hutchison edged Monroe Catholic 3-2 in overtime to win the small schools state championship in February.
North Pole and Delta Junction will play for third place at 7:30 p.m.
Jacob Hebard and Kyle Coiley both had seven-point games to lead the Rams, who got off to a slow start in the first period due to numerous penalties.
Hebard scored three goals and had four assists, while Coiley had a pair of goals and five helpers.
“We just couldn’t get into the flow in the first period because of the penalties,” Monroe coach Kirk Haman said. “We got rolling in the second and third period and played pretty well.”
After taking a 1-0 lead in the first period, the Rams scored five times in the second and four more times in the third.
Elliot St. Laurent, Joseph Rauenhorst, Jackie Lemons, Dylan Steele and William Brice accounted for the other Monroe Catholic goals.
Monroe Catholic goaltender Nathaniel Brose stopped 17 of the 18 shots that came his way.
Delta Junction goalie Brice Ward registered 34 saves.
Tyler Williams scored Delta’s lone goal off an assist from Jared Smith.
JR Boots and Dylan Edwards contributed two goals apiece as Hutchison set up the title showdown with a win against North Pole.
“The team played well tonight,” Hutchison coach Keith Bartusch said. “I was happy with the effort.”
Kevin Steffey and Thomas Lees added goals for the winners. Assists went to Lees, Edwards, Boots, Brandon Rustad, Tom Lemelin and Dylan Sands.
Kiefer Radunz and Blake Wade scored goals for the Patriots, with assists going to Jas Ranson and Daniel Volsky.
Hutchison goalie Patrick Hirt made 11 saves. North Pole goalies Ian Hancock and Jimmy Culley combined to stop 38 shots.
Contact the News-Miner sports department at *459-7581.