Bruins bring the scoring punch to beat Magicians

Published 10:51 pm Saturday, November 2, 2019

Things are starting to click for the Austin Bruins.

The Bruins put up a season’s best scoring output as they wrapped up a weekend sweep over the Minnesota Magicians with a 6-3 win in Riverside Arena Saturday night.

Hugh Larkin, who leads the Bruins with 15 points on the season, tallied two goals and he dished a pin-point assist to Ben Almquist to help give the Bruins a 5-3 lead in the second, but he had to spend the third period in the stands after receiving a game misconduct for facemasking.

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Larkin was able to stomach the penalty, knowing the Bruins were on their way to their third win in four games after having dropped their previous four contests.

Austin’s Hugh Larkin struggles through Minnesota Magicians defenders during the second period Saturday night at Riverside Arena. Eric Johnson/

“It’s good to at least come off the ice knowing that your team is winning. We’ve been getting things together and guys are getting the system down,” Larkin said. “Last week we finally started picking it up and guys and a lot of chemistry is building. Guys are passing and knowing where everybody is without looking.”

The Bruins (8-6-1-2 overall) have already had to play in overtime eight times this season, so it was crucial for Austin to pull off the win in regulation. Austin head coach Steve Howard said he challenged his team before the game and they were able to answer the call against the Magicians (4-7-3-2 overall).

“We need to take that step forward and we need to turn the corner. We’ve had a lot of close games and we’ve won some of them, but we’ve got to start winning in regulation and start bearing down,” Howard said. “We haven’t scored a lot of goals and to get six of them tonight was good for our guys’ mental state.”

Austin’s Dante Sheriff tries to work around the Minnesota Magicians’ Blake Kryska during the second period Saturday night at Riverside Arena. Eric Johnson/

The Magicians were able to score two transition goals off of turnovers to keep the game tied 2-2 after one period, but Austin’s defense clamped down the rest of the way.

“We just did our job on defense and we didn’t worry about trying to get out and do the forwards’ jobs,” said Austin’s Jed Pietila, who had one goal in the win. “We were just chipping the puck out and letting the forwards do what they have to do.”

Mason McCormick, who is from Verona, Wis., had his first career NAHL goal in to put Austin up 4-2 in the second period.

Brett Miller had 20 saves to score the win for Austin.

Magicians 2 1 0 – 3
Austin 2 3 1 – 6

First period
(A) Hugh Larkin (Cullen Rush, Dante Sheriff) 4:43
(M) Jake Hale 6:05
(A) Carson Riddle (Sheriff, Rush) 7:44
(M) Trevor Kukkonen 15:54

Second period
(A) Larkin (Josef Mysak, Riddle) 7:37
(A) Mason McCormick (Jaden Shields, Scha Gullemain) 8:02
(M) Jimmy Doyle (Hale) 12:)5
(A) Ben Almquist (Barrett Brooks, Larkin) 15:35

Third period
(A) Jed Pietila (McCormick, Peter Jacobs) 11:38

Shots: Austin – 30; Magicians – 23
Power plays: Austin – 1-for-7; Magicians – 0-for-4