Rhinelander’s Abe Laggis works in front of the Green Bay United net during the second period of a non-conference boys’ hockey game at the Rhinelander Ice Arena Friday, Dec. 8. (Bob Mainhardt for the River News)
12/12/2017 7:36:00 AM Hodag hockey routs Green Bay United, improves to 5-0
The Rhinelander High School boys' hockey team's hot start continued Friday with its most lopsided victory to date.
The Hodags erupted for four goals in the second period, and held a whopping 54-7 edge in the final shot count, as it routed Green Bay United 7-0 at the Rhinelander Ice Arena.
It was Rhinelander's fifth straight win to start the season and certainly its most convincing.
After a scoreless first period, the floodgates opened for Rhinelander in the second and stayed open with three more goals in the third.
Abe Laggis and Bridger Flory each scored twice in the contest. Freddy Wisner and Brandon Kolasa scored and senior Nick Sandstrom earned his first career varsity goal.
"We weren't moving the puck very well (in the first period), weren't getting it to the slot, weren't cycling it very well, really doing any of the things that we were working on. On top of that, I thought we were a little flat," Rhinelander coach M.J. Laggis said of the scoreless opening period. "We got back to our game in the second period and when we move the puck good things happen."
Wisner got things started 2:31 into the second off an assist from Danny Zuiker and Abe Laggis added a short-handed goal less than three minutes later.
"That was a hard-working goal," M.J. Laggis said. "He just stayed on the puck in the corner and, all those little escape moves he's worked on his whole life, he was able to work it to the net and got a nice scoring opportunity."
Flory made it 3-0 at the 9:59 mark of the second off a feed from defenseman Matthias Schneider.
"That pass from Matthias Schneider to Bridger that went top shelf, that's about as pretty of a goal as I've ever seen," Laggis noted.
Abe Laggis scored again at the 12:34 mark as the Hodags took a 4-0 lead after two periods. Flory scored again 51 seconds into the third. Kolasa gave the Hodags a six-goal lead and sent the game into running time with a marker 2:52 into the period and Sandstrom scored unassisted at the 10:17 mark in what may have been the highlight of the night for the Hodag bench.
"I can't tell you how good it feels to watch a kid who didn't play last year, practiced only, and to come out this year, he's gotten progressively more playing time as it's gone," Laggis said. "He played very well in Mosinee and by far got his most playing time of the year. He got a lot of ice at the end (tonight) and, what a nice goal. I'm proud of him. He was really stoked and it's great to see a senior break the ice."
Rhinelander controlled a Gryphon team that dressed only 11 skaters for Friday's game. Seth Stafford needed to steer aside only seven shots to record his first shutout of the season.
The Hodags got back on the road tonight to face Medford in a Great Northern Conference contest.
Freelancer Bob Mainhardt contributed to this report.
Jeremy Mayo may be reached at email@example.com.
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