By: Ken Oda, minotauroshockey.com
Austin, MN – The Tauros weekend starts with a big test against the first place team in the Central Division, the Austin Bruins. The Bruins have gone 10-0-1 since the showcase to start the season, all against other Central teams. The Tauros meanwhile have only played four games against Central opponents going 1-4-0.
After a difficult 0-6-1 start to the season the Tauros have gone 4-5-0. The turnaround has was lead early by the line of Tim Donohue, Cameron Rowat, and Lucas Oliver. That line had slumped a little of late, and now will be without Donohue who will be out with an injury for at least three weeks. Helping to pick up the slack for the Tauros have been Jake O’Borsky, Jadin Martin, and Steven Sherman. O’Borsky has 11 points in eight games with the Tauros. Much was expected from the two NAHL vets as Martin and Sherman. Martin lead the Tauros in scoring last season and Sherman posted 10 points over the final 10 games for the Chicago Hitmen last season. While the two got off to slow starts it appears they are breaking out of it with five points over the last five games each.
Another key to the Tauros’s turnaround has been Tyler Parks. Parks struggled in his first three appearances after joining the Tauros from the USHL early in the season. Over the last six games Parks has a .910 sv%, Minot is 3-3-0 over that time.
This weekend will be the Tauros first look at the Bruins. In net Nicholas Lehr has carried most of the load for Austin going 8-2-1, a 2.67 GAA, and a .911 sv%. His backup, Jason Pawloski, has not been much of a relief for Bruins opponents with 4-0-0 record himself.
Brandon Wahlin has paced the Bruins attack with five goals and 16 assists over 15 games for the Austin. John Simonson is second on the team in points and leads the team with nine goals. Cody Dixon has been a force since being acquired from Springfield with six goals and three assists in eight games for the Bruins.
Player to Watch: Wes Iverson, over his last four games Iverson has two goals and an assist.
Watch the Game: Tonight is the second Buffalo Wings and Rings Road Watch Party. Tickets are still available by clicking the “tickets” tab atop this page. Tickets cost $30 for all you can eat wings and beer, $15 for wings and soda, and children under 10 are just $5.