Minot, ND – The Minot Minotauros opened the home portion of the 2018-19 schedule in grand fashion with a thrilling come from behind victory over the Bismarck Bobcats to earn a weekend split with their southern rival and keep a solo hold on the Central Division’s top spot.
Friday’s game in Bismarck saw the Tauros start slowly. Hampered, in part, by three penalties in the opening period the Tauros trailed 1-0 through 20 minutes as Jacob Marti scored a power play goal for the Cats. Despite the Cats having three power plays to the Tauros none shots were close at 14-11 through the period. Despite the Tauros evening up the power play opportunities and shots in the second it was the Cats who scored the period’s only goal when Dawson McKay scored on the rush. The Tauros pushed hard in the third period firing 18 shots on goal but did not score until there was only 1:09 left in the game when Taylor Lantz scored his fifth of the season. The Tauros created several chances in the final minute of the game including a chaotic netmouth scrum but were not even credited with a shot on goal. Adam Stacho added an empty net goal in the waning seconds to push the final to 3-1 Cats.
Saturday the Tauros finally played their home opener after starting the season with seven games away from the Pepsi Rink at Maysa Arena. Prior to the game the Tauros unveiled their 2017-18 Central Division Championship banner. The Bobcats tried their best to spoil the party again jumping out to a 2-0 lead on the Tauros by the 4:08 mark of the second period. Keenan Lund got the Tauros back into the game with the Tauros on the power play. The goal got the Tauro fans back into the celebratory move and it carried into the third period. The Tauros tied it when Didrik Henbrant got his third of the season at 3:41 of the third with the Tauros on the rush. 39 seconds later the Tauros Brennan Couet was sent to the penalty box drawing a chorus of boos for referee Jesse Burns. Those boos quickly turned into cheers however when Tauro Captain, Fritz Belisle, scored shorthanded just 10 seconds into the Cats power play to give the Tauros their first lead of the game. The one goal lead held until late in the period when a great individual effort by Connor McGinnis who cut across the slot before sending a pass back to Lund for his second of the game. David Raisanen added an empty netter to finish the scoring for a 5-2 final.
Next up for the Tauros is a weekend set in Aberdeen against the Wings this Friday and Saturday night. Then the Tauros will have another home-and-home set with Bismarck who has this weekend off.