Third-period surge lifts Huskies hockey | VailDaily.com

Third-period surge lifts Huskies hockey

“The big thing is that sometimes you have to take a little off the swing,” Kersey said after Friday night’s Battle Mountain-Liberty game at Dobson. “Sometimes, guys get that scoring opportunity and they almost choke the sawdust out of their stick. But it’s a matter of relaxing around the net and seeing your opportunity and burying it. Eventually, it’s going to come.”

Indeed it did for the Huskies in the form of two, quick goals in the middle of the third period as Battle Mountain picked up a 3-1 conference win over the Lancers.

“It was a very tough hockey team we were playing tonight. I take my hat off to Liberty,” Kersey said. “They’re just a tough, hard-nosed team. They’re very disciplined in their systems and they work extremely hard. They gave us some fits. I think we made our job a little difficult on ourselves tonight. We weren’t capitalizing on our transition game as much as I would have liked us to. We dug down in the third period.”

That was when Nathan Simon fed Keith Denton in front of the net in the third to break a 1-1 tie.

“Nate was just cycling around the net,” said Denton, who wears an “A” for the Huskies. “(Adam) Weiss and I both went for the net. We were just yelling for it and it came through. I just shot it. Finally, it went in. I was so surprised. I was like, “Oh, man.'”

Less than a minute later, there was more rejoicing when Austin Chow fed a streaking Brad Myers, who was streaking through the slot. Myers stuffed it in and the Huskies had some insurance.

Battle Mountain had taken the leading the second period on a nice goal from P.J. Bevan. The captain came charging down the right side and was able to got top-shelf with his backhand as he was being dragged into the net by a Lancers’ defender.

But Liberty tied the game late in the second period, leaving Eric Hansen to stave off the Lancers. The junior proved equal to the task, much to the delight of his coach.

“I thought Eric was outstanding tonight. He played a very good game,” Kersey said. “The last couple of games he’s played, he’s been very good. He’s been competing hard in practice, which I like to see. He made a couple real key saves for us tonight and I take my hat off to him.”

Battle Mountain (8-1 overall, 3-0 in the Metro) doesn’t have much time to enjoy the win. The Huskies host Pueblo today at 3:15 p.m. at Dobson.

“We need to stay positive and know that they can come back at any time and we can easily let down that fast so we’ve got to stay focused,” Denton said.

Chris Freud is the sports editor for the Vail Daily. Contact him at (970) 949-0555, ext. 614 or by e-mail at cfreud@vaildaily.com.