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BOYS HOCKEY: Bemidji falls 2-1 in overtime to Brainerd

BEMIDJI – Billy Desrosier scored 6:46 into overtime to give the Brainerd boys hockey team a 2-1 victory over Bemidji Saturday at the Community Arena.

The Warriors lead 1-0 after the first period but BHS tied it midway through the second stanza when Noah Burns poked home a rebound while the Lumberjacks were on the power play.

Neither team scored in the third period but Desrosier ended the game when he camped in the slot and was in position to score on a rebound.

“There were two evenly-matched teams on the ice,” said Bemidji coach Wade Chiodo. “The bottom line is that Brainerd capitalized on our mistakes and we didn’t. Both of their goals came on mistakes by us.

“This was one of those games where we didn’t get the bounce at the end and they did.”

Gabe Heifort had a great game in the BHS net as he stopped 37 shots, including six in the overtime period.

The Lumberjacks sent 26 shots on Brainerd goaltender Kyle Helmberger but could only put Burns’ shot past him.

A physical game, the teams combined for 15 penalites, including a 5-minute major assessed to the Warriors.

“We’re establishing a rivalry between Bemidji and Brainerd so there was some extra mustard in the game,” Chiodo said. “Until Brainerd scored in overtime it was a fun game. It was the type of game that could have gone either way.”

Saturday’s loss dropped Bemidji to 2-6 and extended the losing streak to three games. Each of those contests, however, has been very close.

“I was happy with our performance. I feel that we are getting better,” Chiodo said. “Defensively we changed our coverage this week and our “D men” did a nice job of honing in on the coverage.

“The difference between us and Brainerd tonight was that we struggled on the rails. At times we couldn’t get the puck out of our zone and that eventually cost us.”

Bemidji is off until Thursday when it will battle Owatonna in the opening round of the holiday tournament hosted by Duluth Denfeld at 1 p.m. The Jacks will also play Friday and Saturday in the tournament but the times and the opponents will depend upon each day’s result.

Brainerd 1 0 0 1 - 2

Bemidji 0 1 0 0 - 1

First period: 1, Bra, Rivard (unassisted) 15:45 SH

Second period: 2, Bem, Burns (Sauer, Hartje) 7:51 PP

Third period: No scoring

Overtime: 3, Bra, Desrosier (unassisted) 6:46

Saves Helmberger (Bra) 12 6 6 2 - 26 Heifort (Bem) 14 10 7 6 - 37

Penalties/minutes: Brainerd 7/17; Bemidji 8/16

Pat Miller

Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

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