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Breck cruises past St. Paul Academy to pick up 13th win

01/26/2017, 7:00am CST
By Drew Herron, SportsEngine

In a Class 1A Top-5 showdown, the Mustangs defeated the Spartans 3-1.



Breck senior Dalton Weigel netted two goals Jan. 26 against St. Paul Academy. Breck went on to defeat the Spartans 3-1. Photo by Korey McDermott, SportsEngine



Breck's Dalton Weigh with one of his two power play goals, here with a shot on screened Spartan goaltender, Andrew Beran. Photo by Korey McDermott, SportsEngine



Put the puck on net and see what happens.

That hockey proverb worked well for Breck Thursday night as the Mustangs rolled to a 3-1 victory over St. Paul Academy at Drake Arena in St. Paul. Breck cashed in on a pair of power play goals and outshot their hosts 34-16 to earn a Independent Metro Athletic Conference series sweep over the Spartans.

Senior captain Dalton Weigel scored both power play goals in the second period, lobbing shots from the top of the slot until two went in, and it tore the game open in the second period.

Weigel’s goals came a little more than two minutes apart early in the period. Both of them came on screens, where Spartans’ goalie Andy Beran’s vision was taken away by traffic, and it proved deadly for St. Paul Academy.

“When I see a screen, whenever I can get the puck to the net, I’ll take it,” Weigel said. “If he can’t see it, you never know what’s going to happen.”

Breck coach Les Larson has a name for those often soft, unbalanced shots.

“We call that the Leopold lobb,” he said. “You don’t need to blast the puck out the back of the net, you just need to hit the net. If the goalie is screened, then anything can happen.”

The shots, the pressure, and the capping of St. Paul Academy’s tremendous offensive power (Spartans are averaging 5.76 goals-per-game) all drove the Mustangs (13-3-2, 6-0-0) past the Spartans in a Class 1A top five showdown. 

The Mustangs, ranked No. 2 in Class 1A by the state coaches' poll, started fast, needing less than 90 seconds to seize the lead for good. Leading to the score, senior forward Grant Parrish took a centering pass from behind the net from Matthew Conroy, stick handled it along the edge of the crease and slipped it past Spartans’ goaltender Andy Beran to get the Mustangs rolling.

In the second came the flurry of goals from the point as Weigel cashed in goals No. 7 and No. 8 for the season. Moreover, it’s not by chance the Mustangs’ power play is clicking at 34 percent for the season.

“We work hard on that stuff,” Larson said of the special teams. “Practically every practice, we work on that, because it’s huge later on. At some point, you’re going to find yourself in a game decided by power plays."

St. Paul Academy (14-3-0, 3-2-0) was held scoreless until 3:39 remained when Dev McCabe spoiled the shutout with the No. 4-1A Spartans’ only goal of the night.

Breck goaltender Linden Olness stopped 15 shots in the victory, while his counterpart, St. Paul Academy goaltender Andy Beran, stopped 31 of the 34 of the shots he faced.

The win is Breck’s fourth in a row, while the Mustangs have not lost a game since before Christmas, stretching their unbeaten streak to 11 games. With another quality victory to add to their resume, Breck might be playing as well as anyone in the metro. 

“It’s all about the culture of this team, we are so much different now than we were the first five games of the season,” Larson said. “Right now, every player has a purpose, and it contributes to what we are trying to do. We try to stress the little things."

“Get the puck over the blue line and get the puck in deep when we have to. Block shots, play the man and play good defense. Quick shifts. Throw rubber at the net. It’s all those tiny things that add up, and when everyone does that, it comes together,” Larson added.

Weigel said that it was a total team effort, where three lines rolled, and three periods were won.

“We just do what we work on in practice,” Weigel said. “We block shots and we get pucks to the net. Those kinds of things are necessary to beat a good team like (St. Paul Academy).”

First Report

Breck defenseman Dalton Weigel scored two power play goals in the second period Thursday night as the Mustangs (13-3-2, 6-0-0) knocked off St. Paul Academy 3-1 in a Class 1A top five showdown.

The Mustangs, ranked No. 2 in Class 1A by the state coaches' poll, started fast, needing less than 90 seconds to seize the lead for good. Leading to the score, senior forward Grant Parrish took a centering pass from behind the net from Matthew Conroy, stick handled it along the edge of the crease and slipped it past Spartans’ goaltender Andy Beran to get the Mustangs rolling.

In the second period, the Mustangs tore the game open with two power play conversions before finishing strong in the third by earning the period’s first 10 shots before finishing off No. 4-1A St. Paul Academy (14-3-0, 3-2-0).

Dev McCabe spoiled the shutout for Breck with the Spartans’ lone goal, coming with 3:39 remaining.

The win is Breck’s fourth in a row, while Mustangs have not lost a game since before Christmas, stretching their unbeaten streak to 11 games.

Breck goaltender Linden Olness stopped 15 shots in the victory, while his counterpart, St. Paul Academy goaltender Andy Beran, stopped 31 of the 34 of the shots he faced.

Photo Gallery


Breck goaltender Linden Olness turned away 15 of St. Paul Academy's 16 shots Thursday night. Photo by Korey McDermott, SportsEngine

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Moorhead's Jack Stetz (21) throws his arms up as he and his teammates celebrated the win. ] ANTHONY SOUFFLE • anthony.souffle@startribune.com

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Micah Miller leaps to the fans after scoring the game winner.

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