Trinity Western’s Brandon Potomak (Aldergrove, B.C.) scored the overtime winner to lift the Spartans to a 2-1 win over NCAA Div. III Hamline University Friday at TRIA Rink. With the win, TWU became the first BCIHL team to ever beat an NCAA opponent.
The Spartans Spencer Gerth (Langley, B.C.) tied the game late in the second period before Potomak tallied the game-winner at 2:38 of the extra session.
Travis Verveda assisted on both goals, while Logan Casavant (Melfort, Sask.) and Kade Vilio (Aldergrove, B.C.) also added helpers.
Mitch Bentfield scored the first unofficial goal of the season for the Hamline men’s hockey team.
The Spartans will now travel to play NCAA Div. I University of Minnesota Saturday. Puck drop is at 5 p.m. (PT).
Bentfield, a sophomore, opened the scoring when he took a pass from Mitch McPherson, cut between two defenders and deposited the puck in the net 11:50 into the game. The Spartans attacked often in the first period with a 14-8 edge in shots but sharp work by goalie Evan Robert foiled the visitors. Robert collected 21 saves before replaced by Sam Nelson midway through the game.
At the other end of the ice, TWU’s Lucas Mills (Burnaby, B.C.) made 26 saves to earn the win for the Spartans.
In the second period, Gerth tied the game at less than five minutes into the second period, ultimately tallying the marker to force overtime.
The third period was tight, with each team taking eight shots to no avail. The Pipers had one chance in the extra period but the Spartans stopped them and then scored themselves at 2:38 to claim the win.
The Spartans have now won four straight games, including their final preseason contest and their first three regular season games.
Head Coach Barret Kropf
“The first 20 minutes was typical of a team flying across the country and having some jet lag. We didn’t get in until 2 a.m. last night and I think we saw a bit of that in the early going. But then we really had a great reset and carried the play in the second and third periods. Credit to Hamline because that’s a hard-working hockey team and they were relentless in their forecheck and it was good for us to learn how to move pucks with speed and make adjustments on the fly. Junior (Mills) was able to make some key saves at critical moments. It was nice for our guys to battle through the adversity and find a way to come together and get a nice road win.”