Park 6, Cretin-Derham Hall 4
Going into Tuesday night, Park's head coach Greg Rinzel knew it was going to be a close game. The game against Cretin-Derham Hall has always been a tight one over the last few years for the Wolfpack.
It was a tale of two halves though as Park had a 1-0 lead at the half, but scored five goals in the second half to win 6-4 over Cretin-Derham Hall.
Not only was it a conference win for the Wolfpack, it was a road win that created some momentum and confidence for the second half of the regular season.
"This is a huge win for us," said Cody Zellmer-Johnson. "We can control the conference now."
The first half was a low-scoring game as Nolan Rinzel was the only player to score as he connected on a goal early in the first quarter. Then, it became a defensive battle for the rest of the half.
The score remained 1-0 at the half due to Zellmer-Johnson's work at the goalie position. He blocked many shots to continue the shutout against the Raiders.
For Zellmer-Johnson, the defense stuck to the game plan and it allowed him to excel at his position for the majority of the game.
"Our game plan was to take away all of their offense," said Ryan Lucas. "Let our offense run the clock, get shots and score."
Zellmer-Johnson said the defense only allowed Cretin-Derham Hall to shoot from the outside, which he excels in blocking shots from that area. His confidence continued to build more and more throughout the game.
The Raiders came out from the half and scored right away to tie the game up, but Park came right back to score from the help of Bradley Lawrence. Cretin-Derham Hall tied the game up again at 2-2 with a goal.
The Wolfpack came back and scored the next two goals with strong shots from Andrew DeVaan and Rinzel. The Raiders scored one last time before the end of the third quarter to make it a 4-3 lead for the Wolfpack, but Park made sure to hold that lead in the fourth quarter.
Park started the quarter with goals from DeVaan and Gunnar Ossmo to make it a 6-3 game. After those goals, the defense focused on maintaining the lead and kept it a two-goal difference until the end of the game to grab the win.
"This is a big win for us," said Greg Rinzel. "I'm just proud of how the boys worked really hard ... We played a really good team game today. We're short staffed anyways, so the bench went in really deep and worked really hard, which was really fun to see."
Park kept Cretin-Derham Hall to four goals on Tuesday night when the Raiders usually score on average about 10 goals per game.
The Wolfpack will look to carry this momentum into the rest of the week and the upcoming second half of the season. Park will play next on Thursday, May 9 at 7 p.m. as the Wolfpack hosts Mounds View.