Ice Hawks Looking to Rebound from Tough Weekend

Rochester Post Bulletin November 8, 2017

The scoreboard was lopsided last weekend, not in favor of the Rochester Ice Hawks.

But head coach Eric Hofmann isn’t laying the 8-1 and 7-2 losses to the Wisconsin Whalers at his goalies’ skates.

The Ice Hawks allowed a total of 107 shots on goal in the losses to Wisconsin, numbers they hope to turn around this weekend.

¬†“We can’t ask our goalies to save so many shots,” Hofmann said. “We have to play a defensive game and win the one-on-one battles.

“It doesn’t matter that we’re getting 35 shots if we’re letting up 50. We can’t expect them to make that many saves.”

Rochester (4-7-0) looks to get back on track during a busy weekend. It plays a home-and-home series on Friday and Saturday against New Ulm (Friday at New Ulm, Saturday in Rochester), then Sunday the Hawks play a 3 p.m. game at La Crosse.

“I like that we generated some shots,” Hofmann said of the Ice Hawks’ 74 total shots for the weekend, “but we have to win those one-on-battles. And it’s the one-on-ones in our own end, where we lose possession of the puck. We need to make the aggressive plays and not shut down if our opponent is playing an aggressive style.”

The Ice Hawks will see a familiar face against New Ulm. Former Ice Hawk and Rochester Mayo defenseman Dylan Boysen is in his first season as a blue-liner for the Steel (4-4-4 overall).

BUCK TO SCHOOL AGAIN

¬†Cort Buck has been one of the Rochester Ice Hawks’ best and most physical defensemen so far this season. But the 17-year-old will trade in his red-and-black uniform after this weekend’s games for the purple-and-gold of Rochester Lourdes.

Buck, who has one goal, one assist and 33 penatly minutes in 10 games, is on a before-and-after agreement with the Hawks. He’ll play with them before the high school season and again after Lourdes’ season is done in February or March. Practice for boys high school teams around the state begins Monday.

“We’ll miss everything about him,” Hofmann said. “He’s really come along this season He’s stepped up into a role that not many young guys could, mentally and physically. He’s gotten better and better and more patient with the puck. I’m excited to see him play in the high school season.”