Myers’ goal puts Royals in win column
Rolf Ulvin, head coach of the Hopkins High boys hockey team, has always believed that there should be rewards for hard work.
For junior forward Jake Myers, the reward was more varsity playing time.
Myers played well against Edina in a Lake Conference game, so when the Royals played Buffalo Feb. 14 on Buffalo’s senior night, Myers’ reward was increased playing time.
The reward paid dividends for the team as he scored the game-winner in the third period of a 3-2 non-conference victory.
“We tell our JV kids that they can earn minutes on varsity,” said Ulvin. “The goal was Jake’s first varsity goal. He created some scoring chances against Edina and earned that ice time.”
Was it a pretty goal?
“Any game-winning goal is a pretty goal,” said Ulvin.
Max Ostenso and Austin Bizal had the other two goals for the Royals.
Ostenso’s goal came on a crisp passing play from Ryan Davis and Ryan Kimbrel.
Bizal’s goal was a tip in front of the net on shot by Tim Weiner.
“We had been in a scoring draught,” said Ulvin. “So we have emphasized trying to throw a lot of pucks at the net. Austin is a big kid, who was primarily a defenseman last season. We like to use him in front of the net. Along with his size he has a willingness to take some shots.”
Another key player in the victory was Hopkins goalie Sam Dalton, who finished with 28 saves.
“We have been sticking with our goalie rotation with Sam and Josh Kuehmichel,” said Ulvin. “Both of them have played well. We are fortunate to have them. Sam had a couple big saves down the stretch.”
With the victory, Hopkins improved to 10-13-1.
“It was a team effort and a team win,” said Ulvin.