Bruins beat Minot, fall to Chill

Published 7:54 pm Sunday, March 18, 2012

Austin's Matt Hansen skates the puck to the net during the second period against Minot Saturday night at Riverside Arena. -- Eric Johnson/

With just five games left in the regular season, the Austin Bruins still trail second place Alexandria by four points in the NAHL Central Division after they beat Minot (6-47-3 overall) 7-4 in Riverside Arena Saturday, but lost 5-3 at Coulee Region (16-32-7 overall) in Onalaska, Wis. Sunday.

In the loss to Coulee Region, Austin’s John Simonson, who has 17 goals on the year, scored his second goal of the game to make 4-3 with 1:36 left in the contest, but Coulee Region’s Mac Johnson put the game away with an empty net goal with 24 seconds left.

Austin's Jake Flynn battles with Minot's Jadin Martin in the Bruins' zone during the first period Saturday night at Riverside Arena. Austin struck for four goals in the first on the way to a 7-4 win. -- Eric Johnson/

Matt Hansen and Jonathan Gerht each had three points in the win over Minot and Nicholas Lehr picked up the win in net with 33 saves.

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Tyler Bruggeman took the loss against the Chill as he finished with 39 saves for Austin.

Whoever finishes in second place between the Bruins (33-16-6 overall) and Alexandria will have home ice advantage in a very likely first round playoff matchup between the two teams.

Austin will host Bismarck in its last regular season home games this Friday and Saturday and the Bruins have one more game againt Alexandria.


Minot 0 1 3 — 4

Austin 4 1 2 — 7

First period

(A) Matt Hansen (Jeremy Finger, Brandon Wahlin) 8:41

(A) Finger (Hansen, Jonathan Gerht) 10:29

(A) AJ Reid (powerplay) (Gehrt, John Simonson) 15:02

(A) Chris Fischer (shorthanded) (Trevor Waldoch, Jake Flynn) 17:02

Second period

(M) Kevin Walz (powerplay) Justin Bonnano, Jadin Martin) 5:59

(A) Colton Kramer 17:02

Third period

(A) Hansen (Charlie Adams, Gerht) 1:47

(M) Hunter Bergeson (Nolan Meyer, Jadin Martin) 6:21

(M) Tim Donohue (Joe Hockert) 8:03

(A) Adams (powerplay) (Wahlin) 16:44

(M) Nolan Meyer (powerplay) (Austin Hoff, Bryan McFarlane) 19:36

Powerplays: Austin — 3-for-7; MInot — 2-for-8

Shots: Austin — 41; Minot — 37

Austin 1 1 1 — 3

Coulee 0 2 3 — 5

First period

(A) CJ Smith (John Simonson) 13:31

Second period

(A) John Simonson (CJ Smith) 13:36

(C) Chris Hughes (Jake Useldinger) 15:32

(C) Eric Drapluk (powerplay) (Adam Thomas, Useldinger) 17:45

Third period

(C) Myles Maltz (Patrick Steinhauser) 5:08

(C) Hughes (Useldinger, James Hughes) 9:02

(A) John Simonson 18:24

(C) Mac Johnson (empty net) 19:18

Powerplays: Austin — 0-for-2; Coulee — 1-for-3

Shots: Austin — 43; Coulee — 44


The Austin Bruins Saturday recognized forward John Kirby with an award for his time spent in the community.

The Bruins have worked hard over the last two years to be a presence in the community including a partnership with McDonalds for the Healthy Habits program that rewarded school children for making healthy choices.

The Austin Bruins' John Kirby was presented with a plaque by the Bruins between the first and second periods Saturday night for his time spent in the community on behalf of the Bruins. -- Eric Johnson/

Kirby has been a leader for the Bruins in community service.

“With John representing his hometown, these school visits put on a different meaning for him,” said Mike Delanty of business operations. “It is great to see the kids look up to him.”

Kirby, aside from spending time in schools, has also spent time helping the Salvation Army.