Hermantown coach Bruce Plante has seen and coached a lot of hockey games in his career, but he has never seen a goal like the one Brian LeBlanc scored in the third period against Monticello/Annandale/Maple Lake. The goal was the eventual game winner in a 2-1 game, and it occurred as LeBlanc attempted to pass the puck to a streaking Jared Thomas.
“I saw he tried to make a pass to Thomas streaking across the blue line, trying to get it into the zone,” coach Plante said. “It went past him and their [defenseman] reached out for it, hit it with his stick, tipped it and it went right up into their net. It was quite a play and I’ve never seen anything like it.”
The puck was deflected just inside the top crossbar behind goaltender Aaron Boros’ left shoulder. The goal broke a 1-1 tie and proved to be the difference in the game.
“I was just trying to get the puck to Thomas and I got a lucky bounce and it went in,” LeBlanc said about the strange play.
Hermantown scored on the power play in the first period to take the 1-0 lead on a Garrett Skrbich snipe shot from the point. Skrbich also assisted on LeBlanc’s goal in the third period.
“We knew we came in here against the top team in the state,” Monticello coach Sheldon Weston said. “It was like the United States going up against Russia back in the 1980’s.But we’re proud of the efforts the kids put forth and how we didn’t quit or give up.”
Monticello’s lone goal came in the second period, also on the power-play, off the stick of Blake Williams. Hermantown also outshot the Moose 35-15, with Monticello getting five shots on net in each period.
Hermantown has a huge contest against Duluth Central at home on Tuesday, Feb. 8th that will decide if the Hawks will share the Lake Superior Championship title with Cloquet/Esko/Carlton.
1. Brian LeBlanc, Hermantown
LeBlanc scored the game winning goal in the third period in a deflected fashion. LeBlanc started the game playing defense the first two periods of the game and then moving up to forward the final period.
2. Garrett Skrbich, Hermantown
Skrbich continues his tear on the point charts as he gets a goal and an assist in the 2-1 win. Skrbich now has 54 points on the season.
3.Aaron Boros, Monticello-Annadale-Maple Lake
Boros stopped 33 of 35 shots in the loss for the Moose, and even the second goal was fluky and not his fault. Boros’ play kept the Moos in the game all throughout the entire game until the final buzzer.