Four unanswered goals from Brainerd between the first and second periods swung the tide of a goal-filled game as Bemidji boys hockey was doubled up 6-3 on Tuesday evening at the Bemidji Community Arena.
After going behind at 8:26 of the first period on a Haden Kruse goal, Bemidji answered a mere 1:11 later. Cole Matetich beat Brainerd goaltender Jed Klang with a wrister on the rush for his first Varsity goal after Tate Hammitt had set him up with an up-ice pass.
Just 46 seconds following the tying goal, the Jacks were 2-1 in front thanks to Dylan Perrault, as the senior scored off a rebound in the slot that had been assisted by Hammitt.
The game turned back in favor of Brainerd in the final minute of the first period. Christian Kadolph tied the game on a rush with 57 seconds remaining, and Mike Laber restored the lead for the Warriors only 32 seconds after that.
Power play goals extended the lead to 5-2 in the second period, both of which were scored by Brainerd defenseman Eric Pohlkamp.
The Jacks finished 1-for-6 on the power play and tallied their lone special teams goal courtesy of Gage Mostad scoring on his own rebound at 6:32 of the third period to make it 5-3. Hammitt picked up his third assist of the night and Reid Colley also notched his first Varsity point with an assist.
Kadolph scored the final goal of the night for Brainerd at 11:04 of the third, his sixth point of the night (2g, 4a). The top line for the Warriors had a role in all six goals.
Filling in for a pair of sick Varsity netminders, sophomore Brayden Puppe made 11 saves on 16 shots making his first Varsity start in goal for Bemidji. Carson Kelm finished the evening and made 12 saves on 13 shots in relief.
Bemidji’s record drops to 3-14-1 ahead of a visit to Cloquet-Esko-Carlton on Friday. Face-off will be at 7:30pm with pregame at 7:15pm on KBUN-FM 104.5 and KBUN1 online.
Postgame interview with Bemidji assistant coach Bazil Zuehlke: