AUSTIN, Texas- (AP) The Pond Hockey Club. With Daylight Savings in effect, the late 9:50pm puck drop felt an hour later and a shade darker last night as your Bros HC faced off against the inconsistent Burt’s Reynolds (BR) team in a battle of two of the top teams in the league. Both of these squads have struggled offensively as of late, and BHL experts mentioned in the pregame show that the first team to score two goals would ultimately win the matchup.
As what has become a seemingly standard first period of play for the Bros, the first period opened up with grinding play with some physicality along the boards. Both teams struggled to find significant breakout opportunities, and instead relied on neutral zone turnovers and extended puck possession within the offensive zones. Despite early efforts from Kevin “To Be Young (Is to Be Sad, Is to Be High Bro)” Mako, the Bros continued to struggle finding ways to attack the net and force opposing goalies out of their comfort zone. Several strong goaltending plays by Chris “My Winding Wheel Bro” Luscombe kept the score tied at zero until Travis “Bro My Sweet Carolina” Considine capitalized on a rebound to score his first of the season and put the Bros on top. The first period ended with the Bros maintaining a fragile 1-0 lead.
The second period featured more of the same sluggish play from each team as the Bros relied heavily on Luscombe and the defensemen to keep BR at bay. Michelle “Brotering Lines” Stock and Chris “Call Me On Your Way Back Home, Bro” Beard stood strong and unwavering as BR put the Bros to the test during the game’s lone power play, but the Bros bent without breaking. The team found a few hot chances thanks to the patience of Brian “Damn Sam (I Love a Bro That Rains) Cunningham and the vision of Fabian “Come Pick Me Up Bro” Figi, but BR clogged lanes and kept the Bros off the boards in the offensive zone. Before the end of the period, BR forced a turnover on the Bros’ anemic breakout, and scored. As the second period closed, the game was locked in with both teams scoring once.
The BR quickly scored their second goal of the game in the first 30 seconds of the final frame. Despite their struggles offensively, the Bros defense kept the team within striking distance. Ross “To Be the Bro” Tagtow and captain Andrew “Why Do Bros Leave?” Feigenbaum helped maintain pressure on the forecheck that led to Cam “Shakedown on Bro Street” Cunningham’s game-tying goal. Beard and Noah “Don’t Ask for the Water, Bro” Leggett helped push the puck up the ice, and Jay “Sweet Lil’ Bro” Wood provided some neutral zone strips, but the team simply couldn’t keep up offensively with the BR, who managed to put up two more goals in the third to win 4-2.
Considine picked up the team’s first star of the game, and Cam Cunningham took home second star honors for continuing his point streak.
BHL correspondent Scott Braun spoke with Luscombe about the ending of the squad’s three game win streak. A visibly lugubrious Luscombe replied, “Scott- we’re not in panic mode yet. Obviously, we’d like to see a bit more offensive production from the forwards, and we’re going to go back and watch game tape and figure out how we can improve the breakout through the neutral zone. Just a couple small adjustments and we’ll be fine.”
The team faces a recently surging Golden Thrashers team at 7pm next Wednesday at the Barn.
- Steve Czerniak was a healthy scratch last night. He was last spotted waiting in line at Franklin BBQ ahead of their 11/14 reopening. He was the 28th person in line.
- Nick Leggett was a healthy scratch last night. He was last seen in the upside down world trying to save Will.
BY THE NUMBERS
- 16 goals through 6 games, the fewest for the team in three seasons.
- 4 goals given up by the Bros; the most in one game this season.