After losing four straight to start the season, the Missouri men’s hockey club won a pair at home this weekend against Eastern Illinois.
Missouri was able to take control of both games early on. In its first game Saturday, the Tigers took a 3-0 lead on the Panthers, later winning 6-3. The trend continued into the second game when the Tigers led 2-0.
“We definitely focus on getting off to a good start,” coach John Lamond said. “We’ve always been a second and third period team and not much of a first period team in the past, so we are trying to focus on that this season.”
After Missouri’s strong start in the second game, EIU did battle back and tie the game in the second period, but it proved no match for Missouri. The Tigers scored six goals in the third and cruised to an 8-2 victory.
“We were keeping our legs moving,” Nick Webb, junior forward and alternate captain, said of the team’s third period outburst. “They were short guys and had less numbers, so we knew they were tired. We ran four lines and made sure everyone was running and working hard.”
Over the weekend, the Tigers were able to rack up scoring contributions from 11 different players.
“We have four solid lines, and we expect scoring from all of them,” Lamond said.
The team was also able to improve on the defensive end. After giving up a combined 30 goals in its first four games, Missouri was able to hold EIU to five goals in two games.
“I think our forwards were helping our defense more and not abandoning them,” Lamond said. “We also had better goaltending.”
Next weekend, the Tigers will head to the American College Hockey Association’s Showcase Tournament in Kalamazoo, Mich. The tournament features teams from all over the country.