Muskies open action on winning note

The Muskie boys’ hockey team kicked off its 2005/06 season with a three-game sweep of an exhibition series against the Thunder Bay Kings and Shattuck St. Mary’s at the Memorial Sports Centre over the weekend.
The Muskies opened play with a 5-2 win over the Kings on Friday night, getting on the scoreboard first when Tyler Miller tallied less than a minute into the game.
Tied 1-1 in the second, Josh Sigurdson found the back of the net at 15:38 to put the black-and-gold back in front.
After the Kings knotted the score once again just over two minutes into the third, Kevin Bobczynski notched the eventual game-winner with less than six minutes to play in regulation time.
Miller then sealed the win with a pair of goals in the final minute to complete the hat trick.
It was a different story Saturday night as the Muskies erupted for a 6-0 lead through two periods en route to a 8-1 rout over Shattuck St. Mary’s.
Tyson Romyn got the scoring parade started with a goal just 39 seconds into the game. Miller then notched his fourth goal of the weekend to make it 2-0 at the first intermission.
It was all Muskies in the second as Brock Benjamin, Josh Sigurdson, Scott McFayden, and Miller, the latter goal coming with just two seconds left in the period, made it 6-0.
The visitors got on the scoreboard about midway through the third when they beat goalie Cody Wood, but Bobczynski and Alex McQuarrie rounded out the scoring later in the period.
The same two teams faced off again Sunday morning, with the Muskies once again jumping out to a big lead in the first period on goals by Miller, Andrew Easton (two), and Benjamin.
Benjamin made it 5-0 about four-and-a-half minutes into the second before Shattuck St. Mary’s battled back with a pair of goals before intermission.
Bobczynski netted the lone goal of the third period to make the final score 6-2.
In the only other game of the exhibition series, the Kings edged Shattuck St. Mary’s 4-3 on Saturday afternoon.
“[We] were relentless on the forecheck,” noted Muskie head coach Shane Bliss. “This frustrated the other teams and caused them to take some undisciplined penalties, and we capitalized with eight power play goals [on the weekend].
“The other two teams ran three lines [while] we were able to wear them down by running four lines and taking the body when we could,” Bliss added.
So was the Muskies’ success this past weekend any indication of what the rest of the season has in store?
“We play a lot of games and have a pretty tough schedule,” Bliss remarked. “But I think if the boys continue to build on this past weekend, we will continue to play better and eliminate mistakes.”
Although the Muskies put on an impressive display of good solid hockey against the Kings and Shattuck St. Mary’s, Bliss stressed there are still things the team will be working on in practice.
“We still need to play better in the defensive zone and we have to be better at being in our positions,” he noted. “Offensively, we need to move the puck quicker and pass more accurately.”
The Muskies will open the NorWOSSA regular season here this Friday (Nov. 11) when they host Red Lake at 7:30 p.m. at the Ice for Kids Arena.