The Comeback Cougars
Bloomington Jefferson started it…Centennial finished it. That was the gist of the first quarterfinal game of the Schwan Cup on Tuesday at Xcel Energy Center. The Cougars beat the Jaguars in a catfight, 3-2 in overtime.
Centennial controlled the flow, Jefferson controlled the scoreboard. They started out on top when Josh Levine (asst: Matt Labombard, Kevin Barr) scored at 7:53 of the first to make it 1-0. It wasn’t for a lack of effort by Centennial as they unloaded on Jaguar goalie Austin Lee with 37 shots, 12 in the first.
The Jaguars came back for more at 6:13 of the second when Scott Schofield (asst: Levine) made it 2-0. That score held up into the third. That’s when Centennial was done messing around.
Josh Bergren (asst: Kyle Lucklow, Jordan Van Gilder) finally got one past Lee at 5:01 of the third. And that seemed to break the seal for Centennial.
The Cougars held constant pressure late in the third but needed an extra skater to help them out. Centennial pulled their goalie, Jack Hanna, at 16:04, and tied the game just :08 seconds later when Van Gilder (asst: Jordan Singer) earned his second point of the game.
The game was tied 2-2 at the end of regulation, but Van Gilder wasn’t done. He scored the game winner for Centennial by displaying great patience. He carried the puck out from behind the Jaguar net, waited for Lee to commit, then skated across the front and buried in the back.
Centennial will face the winner of Holy Angels and Duluth East Wednesday at 6pm for the Schwan Cup semifinals at Xcel. Jefferson will play the loser in the consolation bracket at 12:30pm at the ‘X’.