Huskies knock off No. 1 Cheyenne
COLORADO SPRINGS – This one was nearly three years in the making for Battle Mountain hockey.On February 28, 2002, Cheyenne Mountain’s Tim Hamby scored in double overtime of the state-title game to defeat the Huskies, 3-2. In their first meeting in nearly three years, No. 3 Battle Mountain literally turned the tables on the No. 1 Indians, winning, 3-2.”It awesome. It’s sweet,” said senior Austin Chow, who played in the heartbreaker in February 2002. “Preparing for the game, that’s all I thought about it.”With the win, the Huskies sent a message to the rest of the state. Despite losing 11 seniors to graduation, Battle Mountain will again be in the mix for the state title come February.”It’s huge. I think it sets the tone for the rest of the season and it speaks for itself,” Chow said. “They had those guys ranked No. 1 in the state and we just put them down. Hopefully, we’re just going to build from there as a team and keep it rolling.””It was a big ‘W’ for us,” Huskies coach Andy Hire said. “Our kids came out flying and dominated the whole game, pretty much owned them. We knew this was going to be a big one for us – to kind of see how far we are compared to the best of the best – and we kind of showed them they’re not the team to beat anymore. We might be.”
Happy birthday, Evan ShererEvan Sherer celebrated his 18th birthday in fine style Friday with two goals, including the game-winner with 1:20 left in regulation.”Brad (Myers) had it down low,” Sherer said. “He passed it right to Austin in the corner and I came down in the slot wide open. He just hit me. I put it lower right. I was really excited. I was just looking for someone to grab.”Chow to Sherer early in the first period gave the Huskies an initial 1-0 lead. Chow came out from the right corner ad fed Sherer on the weak side.The Indians responded with two quick goals early in the second period. Back on their heels a bit, Chow steadied the ship with the tying tally off a beautiful pass from Alex Biegler.Just as the Huskies were down against Aspen at last weekend’s King of the Mountain Tournament in Steamboat, Battle Mountain was showing its ability to rally from behind.
“We were dominating them,” Chow said. “We put them back on their heels from the start and they had to run with us. That’s always good to do. Alex and Evan played outstanding today.”‘Let’s not go there’Hire is new to CHSAA hockey and didn’t know that if the two teams were tied at the end of regulation that there would be an eight-minute extra frame.”I didn’t really want to go to OT. To tell you the truth, I didn’t even know if there was OT,” Hire said. “I said, ‘Let’s not go there.’ We cut it down to two lines and a lot of short shifts. We just kept firing at them. I think we were in better shape than they were and I think we had more intensity.”Hire shortened his forward rotation to the lines of Sherer, Chow and Biegler and Myers, Derek Byron and Casey Kleisinger. After the Huskies took the lead for good, Hire called a timeout to rest his troops. Sherer, Chow, and Myers played the final minute up front, while Biegler dropped back to the blueline with Jonathan Stevens. Goalie Karl Eklund got the win with 21 saves.
There’s no rest for Battle Mountain (3-0 overall and 1-0 in the Metro). The Huskies take on Liberty at Honen Arena in Colorado Springs today at 9:30 a.m.”I congratulated them, but right after that, the first thing I told them was for the weekend, we’re only halfway there,” Hire said. “We accomplished the first step of our mission. We still have half left.”Ice chipsHire’s three stars for the game were 1) Sherer, 2) Chow and 3) Brad Myers. … Schedule change: Battle Mountain’s home opener vs. Air Academy on Friday has been moved to Feb. 12 at the Eagle Ice Rink. With the weaker nature of conference play, the Huskies wanted to play a tougher team like Air Academy later in the season to sharpen themselves for the playoffs. … That makes the home opener a week from today at 6 p.m. at Dobson against Kent Denver. The two teams have met in the state semifinals three straight years with the Sun Devils eliminating the Huskies the last two times. Hire won’t really need a pep talk for this one.Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at (970) 949-0555, ext. 614, or email@example.com.Vail Colorado