Minot, ND – The Minotauros came into the weekend in control of their playoff destiny following a clean sweep of the Aberdeen Wings last weekend. Hosting the Austin Bruins for the final home series of the regular season, Minot didn’t disappoint their fans by picking up two wins against the Bruins.
On Friday night, the Tauros braved a challenging first period, aided by their netminder Noah Rupprecht, who stopped 11 Austin shots in the opening frame. Despite the intense back-and-forth action, neither team managed to score a goal before heading into the first intermission.
Minot struck first when Trevor Stachowiak recorded his 14th goal of the season, giving the Tauros a 1-0 lead with 13:37 left in the second period. Kolby Amici and Jan- Kasper Bergman added the assists. Austin would counter at 19:04 when defenseman Matthew Desiderio netted his fifth marker of the campaign making it 1-1.
Austin jumped ahead 2-1 as Bruins Gavin Morrissey slid one past Rupprecht with 11:31 left in regulation. Tauros Weston Knox, just over two minutes later, grabbed his sixth marker on a beautiful move to beat Austin goalie Trent Wiemken. Stachowiak and Braden Fischer provided the helpers.
No other goals would be scored in regulation or overtime, and the outcome had to be decided in a shootout. Austin could not solve Rupprecht in the shootout, while Tauros Chase LaPinta scored on a nifty move to clinch Minot’s 3-2 victory.
Saturday was another hard-fought affair, with zero goals being scored until the 14:36 mark of the second period. Then, Defenseman Nick O’Hanisian sniped just below the circles after a great dish from Colby Joseph coming out of the corner to take a 1-0 lead. Colby Woogk logged the secondary assist.
The Bruins could not connect on several opportunities in the third. However, Tauros Hunter Longhi and Colby Woogk added insurance markers to help Rupprecht pickup a 3-0 shutout and a Tauro’s series sweep.
Next up for the Tauros is a weekend road trip to Austin for the final games of the regular season on Friday and Saturday nights. Stay tuned to gotauros.com and our social media channels for updates on the Tauros playoff race.