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12/01/2007 2:00 AM -
In a wild and woolly contest,
Chase Haubersin started the scoring just 2:00 into the game before former defenseman Bill Krueger’s hard work goal evened the score at 17:32 of the first. But the score would not stay tied going into the first intermission, as Adam Fisher scored for the Diablos on a two-man advantage just 57 seconds from time.
Nick Gorup equalized for
But the big showdown was yet to come, courtesy of a six-goal third period.
Falling to the ice, Nick Watters popped the puck far post past Hollinger unassisted at 1:46, followed just over two minutes later by d-man Graham Newell. But Newell might have wanted to rethink his celebration, as he shushed the crowd at the
One thing Herman has commented on all season is how tenacious this year’s Rhinos are, and they proved their coach right again.
Zach Hale got the crowd back into the game with a beautifully-placed shot past Diablos’ goalie Jason Barden, tucking his wrister just inside the far post at 6:10 for the Rhinos’ first power play goal of the game.
Hale struck again on the man advantage at 10:43 to even the game, assisted by Hard Work Hayden Kowalski. Kowalski’s pestering of
Not backing away with score tied, Kowalski continually placed himself on the Diablos’ porch, and again his work paid off as he deflected Hale’s shot past Barden for the lead with just 3:01 left in regulation.
But an amazing series of events gave the Diablos another 5-on-3 power play, as referee Michael Anderson whistled
Appropriately, neither team could take down the other in the five-minute overtime, but El Paso’s quality in the shootout showed, as Hollinger stopped three of San Antonio’s five shots, while the Rhinos scored on three of their four. Wilhite’s strike stick-side, low, beat Barden to the left post, and after Hollinger forced Nick Compton too wide to follow through on the Diablos’ final try, Wilhite’s goal was the game winner, netting him First Star honors.
Hollinger remains third in the Western States Hockey League with a 1.88 goals-against average as
The two teams will play again Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. MST and Sunday afternoon at 5:30 p.m. MST. Fans can follow the action at www.elpasorhinos.com as Duke Keith and Michael Hissam have the play-by-play, and can get live game-tracking at www.pointstreak.com. Just key “WSHL” into the hockey searchbar and follow the links.