It’s WEEK NINE of the Eagle River Hockey League, and this is the AAA recap.
Homesteaders vs. Garcia’s
A big night for the Garcia’s team. First win of the season with a decisive 7-2 victory over the Homesteaders. A minute after the drop of the puck, #24 Kyle Johnson lit the lamp for the first of his four goals of the evening. Kenny Holmberg got the helper on the first one. Two minutes later, Homesteaders Mike Farmer, with help from Powell Gallagher, tied the game at 1-1. With the first period winding down, Andrew Duta netted Garcia’s second goal with the assist going to Ben Morse. It was the second period action that buried the Homesteaders. Morse led off the second period scoring making it 3-1. Then Johnson went to work scoring three unanswered goals – the third one on a power play strike. As if that wasn’t enough, with :23 seconds remaining in the period, Johnson assisted Chugiak High School hockey coach Walter Eunice with the final goal of the period. Mid way through the third Homesteaders Jesse Johnson scored unassisted, making the final score 7-2, Garcia’s. Referees Chris Rothermel and Steve Woods called five penalties, three going to Homesteaders and two on Garcia’s.
Pizza Man vs. Jalapenos
For the second time this season Jalapenos did not have former NHL player Brian Swanson in the line-up. Swanson is rehabbing a lower body injury but was present at the game. Michael McCurtain lead off the scoring for Pizza Man with a little help from Patrick Zmuda. Three minutes later, Zmuda assisted McCurtain again for a second goal for Jalapenos. At 4:31 of the first, former ERHS standout Ben Russell netted the first of his two goals of the game ending the period 2-1. During the second period, Jalapenos was able to kill off two penalties and tie the game with a goal from Dylan Kingrea with the assist going to Dustin Smith. The third period was a nail biter for both teams. With 9:44 remaining, Russell lit the lamp for the go ahead goal with help coming from Billy Bagron. Pizza Man desperately trying not to let this one slip away, tied the game at 4:49 with a goal from Kyler Quinn and the playmaker again going to Zmuda. A determined Jalapenos stepped on the gas when Russell fed long time youth hockey coach Pete McEnaney the puck, which found the back of the net with 2:23 remaining. Final, 3-4 Jalapenos. The teams had a combined seven penalties for fourteen minutes. Jalapenos is in first place with a record of 8-1-0 and Pizza Man is five points behind, in second place, with a record of 5-3-1.
Daniel Shepard is a freelance photojournalist and regular contributor for the ECHO News. He lives and owns a photography business in Eagle River. To learn more about Dan Shepard Photography, visit dan-shepardphotography.com. To reach Dan, email: email@example.com.