CEC boys fall to Duluth East, HopkinsThe Cloquet-Esko-Carlton boys hockey team had two big tests this week – and unfortunately came up short in both of them as they fell to 4-4-0 on the young season.
By: Jeff Papas, Pine Journal
The Cloquet-Esko-Carlton boys hockey team had two big tests this week – and unfortunately came up short in both of them as they fell to 4-4-0 on the young season.
Last Thursday night, the ’Jacks fell 5-2 to a surprisingly physical Duluth East team at the Heritage Sports Center in Duluth – in a contest where their coach felt the team should have done better.
“In terms of the whole ice, and in transition, we were terrible,” Coach Dave Esse said. “That was disappointing.”
Duluth East senior Hogan Davidson scored a goal in each period for a hat trick for the Greyhounds, but defenseman Drew Dincau’s seeing-eye shot from the left point at the 9:14 mark of the second period gave the ’Jacks a 1-1 tie and, at the time, a better fate than they eventually received.
“Our special teams play was disappointing,” Esse said. “I think some of our younger players were a little intimidated from the past and that didn’t help.”
“We went in timid,” CEC captain Beau Michaud added. “We were playing in a smaller rink and some of our players weren’t used to that at the varsity level. We need to be ready for the next time we play [East].”
Despite having the better of the play for the first 10 minutes of the game, CEC found itself behind 3-1 after two periods when Jack Forbort’s power-play goal on East’s only man-advantage of the game gave them a two-goal lead.
Ryan Lundgren and Davidson made it 5-1 in the third period before Weston Michaud scored his 12th goal of the season to close the scoring. Justin Ketola made 23 saves on 28 shots in goal for the ’Jacks.
“The thing is, as poorly as we played at times, it’s only one game and we get to play them again,” Esse said. “We will be better the next time we face them.”
The game marked the 500th career coaching win for East coach Mike Randolph and his 486th win at Duluth East.
On Tuesday night, the ’Jacks fell 5-3 at Hopkins despite outshooting the Royals 49-31 for the night.
Trailing 2-0 in the second period, CEC got on the board on Karson Kuhlman’s goal at 13:43 but the ’Jacks never led in the game.
Weston Michaud’s power-play goal made it 3-2 in the third period but Jim Coupols of Hopkins made it 4-2 on a power play just 1:05 later, leading to Kris Klatt taking over for Ketola in the CEC goal. Beau Michaud added another power-play goal at 13:11 to make it 4-3 but the ’Jacks could get no closer.
The ’Jacks are at Forest Lake Saturday afternoon before taking part in the Heritage Classic in Duluth starting Dec. 27 against Buffalo.