(Bensenville, IL) – The Concordia men's hockey team took a trip to Chicago to open their first of two matchups with the Roosevelt Lakers on the weekend. Trailing by two goals early in the third period, the Cardinals stormed back with 5 unanswered goals to secure a 7-4 victory Friday night, as Kyle Hebner picked up a hat trick and recorded a program record 5 points.
Zachary Janis started in net for the Cardinals, going the distance for his 5th win of the season.
The Cardinals picked up right where they left off last weekend, scoring in the opening minutes of the contest after Kyle Hebner put home a redirected puck off a Brandon Kucera shot from the point to give CUAA the early advantage. While the period continued with more back-and-forth play, Roosevelt would pick up a goal of their own to tie the score at 1 heading into the first break.
The Lakers continued to build on their momentum early in the second, scoring early in the frame for their first lead of the contest. Concordia countered later in the frame, as Quinn Bieniek would feed a pass across the slot on an odd man rush to Kyle Hebner, who fired a one timer past the Laker netminder to tie the contest at 2 midway through the middle frame. Roosevelt would strike back soon after, and controlling the remainder of the period, would hold a 3-2 advantage going into the second intermission.
The third period kicked off quickly for the Lakers, as they took advantage of a 5-on-3 powerplay less than a minute into the frame, extending their lead to 2 early in the finale period of play. The Cardinals would respond quickly, as within the minute Carson Ediger would pull out a puck from a tight angle and puck it into the back of the net, cutting the deficit to a goal. A few minutes later, Quinn Bieniek jumped in on the action, taking a feed from Nicholas Twombley at the Laker blue line, deking past a defender, and ripping a snipe into the far right corner of the net to tie the contest at 4.
Another odd man rush would bring good news for the Cardinals, as Bryce Iott caught a stretch pass from Riley Smith, went in on a 2-on-1, and picked the far side corner upstairs to give Concordia their first lead since the opening period of the play. Concordia continued the offensive pressure when Brayden Tayles picked up a loose puck on the boards and shoveled it to Quinn Bieniek, who fired a low shot past the goalie to double the CUAA lead just past the halfway mark of the third.
A few minutes later, Kyle Hebner would finish off the hat trick, taking a feed in the far slot from Nicholas Twombley and snapping it into the back of the net for the 5th unanswered goal by the Cardinals and his third of the contest, recording his program record breaking 5th point on the night in the process. Concordia would hold onto their three goal advantage through the end of the contest, securing a weekend opening 7-4 win.
Concordia will be back in action tomorrow, November 19th when they face off with these same Roosevelt Lakers in a rematch. Puck drop is set for 7:30pm (CT) at The Edge Ice Arena in Bensenville, IL.