Men’s hockey wins on the road, loses at home

    Blugolds win season opener against Stevens Point


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    “Going out there and playing them in their own barn felt pretty good when we put up seven goals on them,” Dingmann said.

    The UW-Eau Claire men’s hockey team won their first game of the season at UW-Stevens Point 7-3 on Feb. 3, but went on to lose at home 2-1 on Feb. 5 in the second matchup.

    The Blugolds and the Pointers last played each other at the 2020 Commissioner’s Cup Tournament Final on March 10, where the Blugolds won and took first in the WIAC Championship. The Blugolds followed that up with another win last week.

    The Pointers went scoreless in the first period, while the Blugolds scored four goals. Andrew McGlynn, a fourth-year forward, scored first for the Blugolds just over two minutes into the game.

    Three more goals followed, first by Nick Techel, a second-year forward, followed by Derek Hammer, a third-year forward and near the end of the period, Charles Weiand, a third-year defenseman. 

    In the second period, the Pointers scored one and the Blugolds answered with a goal from Nathan Dingmann, a fourth-year forward. The Pointers scored again to end the period, which brought the score to 5-2.

    In the third period, the Pointers scored their final goal and the Blugolds made two more from Simon Sagissor, a third-year forward and Matt Stanton, a second-year forward.

    Zach Dyment, a fourth-year goalie, stopped 25 of 28 shots. The Blugolds had a total of 33 shots on goal.

    Despite the win, head coach Matt Loen said the game was “average.” Both teams haven’t competed for a year, he said, and the team scored a few lucky goals.

    “It was kind of a sloppy game, I thought,” Loen said. “(Friday) I felt like it was more of a Stevens Point versus Eau Claire conference game.” 

    The Blugolds ended up losing 2-1 in their first home game, however. 

    Jon Richards, a fourth-year forward, scored the first goal in the second period for the Blugolds, but was answered by two back-to-back goals from the Pointers. 

    “It was a good battle,” Loen said. “Either team could have won.”

    Dyment stopped 18 of 20 shots and the Blugolds ended the game with 23 shots on goal. 

    There are a few things that are different this season that the team is not used to, said Nathan Dingmann, a fourth-year forward. One is that the team is used to having games on Friday and Saturday, so having class and a game on the same day felt weird, he said.

    Another difference was having no fans watching. Dingmann said it was unusual because the arena is usually sold out every time they go to Stevens Point. He said it was a struggle for the Pointers as well since the fans are usually there to be on their side.

    “Their fans are pretty rowdy. It kind of gets you fired up,” Dingmann said. “Creating your own energy is very different.”

    Dingmann said it felt really good to put up seven goals against the Pointers in their own arena, especially considering the “beef” between the two teams. 

    “I think that blew them out of the water and they didn’t know what was hitting them,” Dingmann said. “I don’t think they really showed up to play.”

    Dingmann said on Friday the team got outplayed in the first 40 minutes. The Pointers came out “pissed off” from their loss on Wednesday, he said, and the team struggled to get pucks in the net. 

    Dingmann said the Blugolds’ offense was not as strong, players got frustrated and penalties went flying. He said it was more like the Stevens Point they knew.

    The Blugolds face off against UW-Superior tonight at 7 p.m. Dingmann said the team is going to come with more grit after losing their first home game.

    “Speaking on behalf of the team, I think we feel great,” Dingmann said.

    Plueger can be reached at [email protected]