By: Ken Oda, minotauroshockey.com
Bismarck, ND – For the third time in eleven days the Minotauros have knocked off the Bismarck Bobcats. After taking last week Tuesday’s Dickinson, ND exhibition in a shootout 5-4 and last Saturday’s first regular season meeting at the Maysa 4-1; the Tauros went into the Bobcats barn and beat them there too with another shootout win 5-4. The heated seesaw affair saw both teams take leads only to give them up, and the Tauros have shown that their instate rivalry with the Bobcats is not going to be a forgone conclusion any more. In fact with five wins over the league’s top teams like Wenatchee, Fresno, Austin, and Bismarck all in the last seven games the Tauros have erased any doubt that they can compete on the ice.
On Thursday night the Tauros struck first when Jake O’Borsky set up Wesley Iverson’s goal on the rush at 11:53 of the first. However a pair of Bismarck goals late in the period gave the Bobcats a 2-1 edge after the first. Adam Knockenmus scored just 1:21 into the second to push the lead to 3-1.
The Tauros came storming back however, and the charge was lead as usual by the special teams. First O’Borsky scored on the powerplay at the 6:30 mark. Then after Paul Sorenson was sent off for checking from behind, Denis Dalidovich poked a puck out to the neutral zone where it was gathered by O’Borsky for a two-on-one rush. O’Borsky found David Dalbec on the left wing and Dalbec buried the puck behind Bryan Nies to tie the game at three a side and send Nies to the bench.
WithAaron Nelson on in relief the teams fought to a stalemate for the rest of the period. The scoreless minutes were not without excitement however, the Tauros managed to kill a five-on-three man advantage with good work by Collin Abitz, Jake McCann, and a host of Tauros defensemen.
Once the third period was underway the teams seemed leery of taking too many chances. The Bobcats controlled the play early in the frame with help from a powerplay. They were unable to break through though and Cameron Rowat was able to beat Nelson, for the second game in a row, to give the Tauros a short-lived 4-3 lead. Less than three minutes late the game was tied again when Joe Giordano beat Tauro netminder Tyler Parks with a quick turnaround shot through traffic.
The rest of the third period and overtime passed without goals and the Tauros and Bobcats who were each unbeaten in shootouts this year went to the penalty shot competition. Steven Sherman and Matt Audette each scored for the Tauros in the first two rounds while Parks stopped two of his four initial opponents which sent the shootout to the fifth round. Mason Morelli went for the Tauros and skated right down the slot with speed. After the game Morelli said he “saw an opening and went for it,” ripped a wrist shot low to the glove side. Parks got just enough of Knockenmuis shot in the bottom of the firth to give the Tauros the win.
1st Star: Jake O’Borsky 1g, 2a,
2nd Star: Tyler Parks 31 saves, win
3rd Star: Mason Morelli gwg
Thank you fans: Several players and staff members mentioned how amazing the 60 or so Tauros fans who were in attendance were. We thank each and every one of you for supporting the Tauros, it was great to hear the Tauros fans down out the Bobcats faithful..
Next Up: The Tauros return home to take on the Coulee Region Chill each of the next two nights. Tickets are still available for both games and if you can not make it to the Maysa the games will be available on fasthockey.com