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Warriors cruise past Wildcats to complete sweep

By: Waldorf Sports Information Director

ALBERT LEA, Minnesota – The Waldorf University hockey team completed a series sweep over Northern Michigan University by cruising to a 9-2 victory during Saturday’s Northern Collegiate Hockey League (NCHL) matchup.

Junior Drew Soderberg led the Warriors (19-6, 7-3) with three goals and one assist. Waldorf entered the game ranked No. 8 in the latest American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA) Division II Central Region poll.

Sophomore Ryan Veillet contributed two goals and one assist. The Warriors also received goals from freshman Eric Long, seniors Jacob BalesAlex Fleming and Reed Loucks. Junior Jeffrey Bartel provided three assists while senior Spencer Johnson dished out two assists.

Dione Potila produced a goal and an assist for the Wildcats (5-17, 2-8). Ty Markovich also scored a goal.

Waldorf freshman goaltender Hunter Marsh saved 28 of the 30 shots he faced.

Joshua Varvil served as the Northern Michigan goalkeeper for the opening 34 minutes, 30 seconds. Varvil faced 36 shots and collected 30 saves. Tyler Martz filled in for Varvil during the remaining 25:30. Martz rejected 20 of the 23 shots he faced.

Waldorf outshot Northern Michigan by a 59-30 margin.

Soderberg put the Warriors on the board during the fifth minute of the first period with a goal assisted by freshman Tyler Wilson. During the 17th minute of the first period, Soderberg added another goal after capitalizing off a pass from junior Travis Park to put the Warriors ahead 2-0. Loucks netted a goal with less than two minutes remaining in the first period that was assisted by Soderberg.

Soderberg completed his hat trick 11 minutes into the second period after scoring off a pass from Johnson to give Waldorf a 4-0 lead. Long turned in a power-play goal at the 14:20 mark in the second period with Veillet on the assist. Ten seconds later, Fleming contributed a goal that put Waldorf ahead by a 6-0 margin. Bartel and junior Matthew Liggett were credited with assists. Veillet gave the Warriors a seven-goal lead after delivering a score assisted by Bartel with 31 seconds remaining in the second period.

Markovich put Northern Michigan on the board during the third minute of the third period after capitalizing off a pass from Potila. Potila found the back of the net five minutes into the third period to narrow Northern Michigan’s deficit to five goals. Gavin Porter was credited with the assist. Veillet extended Waldorf’s lead to 8-2 by netting a goal six minutes into the third period with Johnson and junior Buddy Napier on the assists. Bales added a score assisted by Bartel 12 minutes into the third period.

Waldorf closes out conference play next weekend with a series against No. 17 Robert Morris University (17-11, 8-2) in Bensenville, Illinois. The two teams are scheduled to battle on Friday and Saturday with both games beginning at 7 p.m.

Waldorf, Robert Morris and No. 5 Marian University (9-3, 7-1) each share first place in the NCHL standings with 21 points. Marian has four conference games remaining and can clinch the No. 1 seed in the NCHL Tournament with six more points in the conference standings. If Waldorf and Robert Morris split its series, the Sabres would only need three points to secure the top seed.

The winner of the series between Waldorf and Robert Morris earns at least a No. 2 seed in the conference tournament and still has a chance to beat out Marian for the top spot with a higher point total. Marian currently holds the tiebreaker over Waldorf and Robert Morris. The loser of the series locks up the No. 3 seed in the conference tournament.