This weekend, the Power faced off against the Oregon Tradesmen for the second time this season. Their first matchup took place at the end of October, when Milwaukee fell to Oregon 9-1. Both teams recorded a win from the previous weekend, and paired with a devastating Power loss from their first meeting, Milwaukee went into this series with high morale and a hunger for revenge.
The weekend matchup began on Thursday with a Power home game – the only one of the series. Milwaukee started the night with Austin Bartell in goal. Oregon was quick to get a point on the board, scoring less than a minute into the game. However, after a penalty against the Tradesmen, the Power capitalized on the power play and tied up the game. The goal was credited to Dominic Martinetti and assisted by Mason Ausmus. Halfway through the period, Oregon took back their lead; by the end, the Tradesmen were two points ahead resulting from a five-minute major against the Power.
Oregon started the second period once again scoring less than a minute into it. After this, the Power switched things up and put Cole Shane in goal. Not long after the goalie change, Cam Dahl scored for the Power, which was assisted by Easton Nick and Ausmus. Milwaukee seemed to be picking up the momentum; with 13:24 left in the period, Nick scored with an assist by Teddy Marion. The Power were only down by one, but just over a minute later Oregon scored yet again.
The first half of the third period brought two more goals for Oregon, but Milwaukee didn’t give up. With less than two minutes left in the game, Ausmus scored with an assist by Trent Van Gels. Unfortunately, the Power weren’t able to pull through and lost 7-4.
Friday night was the first of two games on Oregon’s home ice. The Power started Anthony Maiorca in goal while the Tradesmen started Ian Hedican. The Tradesmen took the lead 3:24 into the first period, but it wasn’t long until the Power tied it up. Nate Stone scored with an assist by Ausmus, which began a big shift in momentum to Milwaukee. Erstad scored unassisted, then Riley Planey scored with assists by Ausmus and Dahl, and Connor O’Neal scored next, assisted by Ben Cremers and Van Gels. All three goals occurred mere minutes within each other! However, Oregon decreased the Power’s lead with two goals later in the first.
Milwaukee began the next period in the lead, but the Tradesmen were quick to fight back. Oregon tied it up a little over a minute into the second – a common occurrence for them to start each period. The Tradesmen scored again later in the period and outshot the Power 22-16. By the third period, however, Milwaukee caught up to Oregon’s shots, thanks to a power play and some amazing scoring opportunities. Nevertheless, the third remained scoreless and Oregon took a 5-4 win.
The final game of the series took place on Saturday night. The Power started Cole Shane in net while the Tradesmen started Cole Garver. Similar to the previous nights, Oregon scored early in the game, but a couple minutes later the Power tied it up. Martinetti recorded his second goal of the series, which was assisted by Dahl and Marion. Just 30 seconds after Martinetti changed the game, Oregon took back their lead.
During the first half of the second, Milwaukee was making some great shots and appeared to be picking up the pace. Despite this, it was a quiet period; both teams drew a couple penalties, and a four-on-four ended the scoreless second. The third period was now or never for the Power. Both teams worked to their full potential, and in the meantime Shane was making phenomenal saves. The final five minutes of the game were exhilarating, as Milwaukee only had a one-point deficit. The Power’s defense ensured the puck wouldn’t get past Shane. However, the Tradesmen fought just as hard, and Milwaukee couldn’t pull out a win.
Although the Power couldn’t record any points this weekend, they showed improvement by the end of the series. After losing by three on Thursday then only being down by one on Friday and Saturday, it appears that Milwaukee found a better strategy during the latter.
On Friday, Nov. 19 and Saturday, Nov. 20, the Power will head to Rochester, Minnesota to face off against the Grizzlies. The two teams have met three times this season and the Grizzlies won each game. Rochester is nearly undefeated this season, only losing once against the Wausau Cyclones. It’ll be an intense series, so make sure to watch it all go down on Hockey TV!
Story by Julia Woodcock