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Minotauros swept by Kenai River in weekend homestand

Trio of Tauros score first goal in weekend slate

Ryan Ladika/MDN Gabe Temple (far right, 22) scores Minot's second goal Friday night to give the Tauros a momentary 2-0 lead.

The excitement was palpable at Pepsi Rink at Maysa Arena Friday and Saturday evening, as 936 fans in attendance made their voices heard for the Minotauros’ first game since New Year’s Eve.

Coming off four consecutive losses, three to the Bismarck Bobcats, the Minotauros were looking for a strong beginning to the new year at home.

On Friday, they got one. Just six minutes into the game, Minot scored its first goal since Kyle Kukkonen’s third-period tally during the Minotauros’ 6-3 loss to Bismarck Dec. 18. The crowd erupted as Brett Roloson got one past the Kenai River netminder just six minutes and 16 seconds into the opening frame, to give Minot a 1-0 lead and end the Minotauros’ lengthy scoring draught. Roloson’s goal, his first of the season, was assisted by Ethan Schmunk.

Later in the period, Gabe Temple, with help from Blaine Warnert and Reid Bogenhom, also found the back of the net just over two minutes later. Temple joined Roloson in potting his first goal of the campaign.

The Minotauros had, as the saying goes, poked the bear.

The floodgates opened for Kenai River, as the Brown Bears scored just after the halfway point of the first period to halve Minot’s advantage.

The visitors scored three more in the second and added a fifth goal with under a minute to play in the third on an empty Minot net to take the first of the two-game set by a 5-2 final score.

The Minotauros’ fortunes didn’t improve on Saturday. Minot fell quickly fell behind 2-0 in the first period to Kenai River. Two more unanswered goals aided in a 4-1 loss in Game 2 to the Brown Bears. The lone Minotauros score came from Logan Anderson on the power play, his first of the season. Anderson was assisted by Donte Lawson and Jack Westlund 14 minutes and 29 seconds into the third frame.

Now riding a six-game losing skid, Minot’s outlook doesn’t get any easier. The Minotauros are scheduled to hit the road to Odde Ice Center to take on the first-place Aberdeen Wings January 27 at 7:15 p.m. Minot lost its last two contests to the 19-1 Wings November 20-21 by a combined 12-2 score.

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