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NPHL Weekend Recap: Saturday, February 13th Junior Hockey News

Published: Sunday, 14 Feb 2016  
By: Garrett J Fabris

Eugene, OR – The Eugene Generals and Bellingham Blazers hit the ice tonight to conclude regular season play against one another. During the first period, the Blazers and Generals traded goals until the Generals captured the team’s first lead of the weekend. Karson DeRego scored first for the Blazers, but the Generals answered with two goals from Logan Sanders and Brett Sparks. As the final horn sounded for the period, the Generals had a 2 – 1 lead.

Once the second period commenced, the Blazers were able to come out and quickly score the first goal of the period. DeRego recorded his second goal of the night for the Blazers while Mark Klasen assisted on the play. With the score tied at two goals apiece, the Generals were able to retake the lead when Nash Berkowitz scored his seventh goal of the season.

As the Generals started the third period with a 3 – 2 lead over the Blazers, no team would score until the final five minutes of the game. The Blazers were able to record a late goal in the period to force overtime. Once in overtime, the Blazers scored the game-winning goal with one second left on the clock. On this goal, DeRego recorded a hat trick as the Blazers beat the Generals, 4 – 3.

Justin Kern, the Generals’ head coach, commented on tonight’s game. He said, “my team played pretty hard tonight and it was a big improvement from last night. Special teams played a big a huge role in tonight’s game. A lucky bounce in overtime for Bellingham, but we have to be more disciplined and stay out of the box.”

Phil Carron, the Blazers’ assistant coach, also shared his thoughts about tonight’s game. He said, “to be honest, our performance was pretty poor. Our effort was lacking, emotions got the best of us at times, and thankfully we were able to battle through.”

The Blazers (27-8-1-0, 55 points) swept the Generals (21-11-2-0, 44 points) this weekend in a two-game series. The next time these teams will see each other will be in the first round of the Northern Pacific Hockey League’s playoffs.

Notable Performances:
(BEL) Karson DeRego (F) – three goals including the game-winning goal
(BEL) Kevin Duncan (D) – stout defensive play, one assist

Kennewick, WA – The Tri-City Outlaws were able to capture a win last night against the West Sound Warriors during the first game of this two-game series. But to start tonight’s game, the Warriors were able to come out and capture the only goal scored in the first period. On this goal, Scotty Perkins was able to sneak one past the Outlaws’ goalie, Taylor Merkley.

After starting the second period down 1 – 0, the Outlaws were able to knot the game at one goal apiece. This goal by Adam Shimamoto would be the first goal in a four-goal period for the Outlaws. As for the other three goals scored by the team, it was Payton Okon, Ty Niskanen, and Jacob Loman finding the back of the net. Once the period came to an end, the Outlaws were able to take a 4 – 1 lead over the Warriors.

During the final period, the Outlaws were able to fend off a late comeback by the Warriors. In the third period, both teams combined to score seven total goals. The Outlaws were able to score three goals while the Warriors scored four. The Outlaws skated away with the 7 – 5 victory tonight.

Geno McCue, the Outlaws’ head coach, discussed his thoughts about tonight’s game. McCue said, “I thought our pace and puck movement was really good. They keep working on their communication skills, and it’s showing. Tonight was a lot better than last night, I’m proud that the boys are starting to take ownership of their accomplishments.”

Matt Ferris, the Warriors’ head coach, also discussed his thoughts about tonight’s game. Ferris said, “we were outplayed during the first two periods of the game, but we were able to get it together in the third. We just ran out of time, I guess. There’s no doubt that this weekend will impact our playoff chances.”

The Outlaws (10-23-1-0, 21 points) were able to complete the series sweep over the Warriors (6-27-1-1, 14 points) tonight. Next weekend, the Warriors will take on the Seattle Ravens in a two-game, home-and-home, series. Then the Outlaws will host the Eugene Generals for a two-game home series.

Notable Performances:
(TRI) Colton Symbol (F) – five assists
(TRI) Aaron Questad (F) – two goals

That wraps up this weekend’s games in the NPHL. Tune in to the league’s website on Monday, February 15th, for the defensive player of the week award!

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