Eagles tame Broncos in two-game sweep


Randle Kinswa for The Easterner

EWU sophomore forward Mitch Hunt (left, #29) pursues the puck. The Eagles swept Boise State in a two-game weekend series.

By Randle Kinswa, Sports Reporter

This story was updated on Nov. 20.

EWU (4-0, 7-7) beat the Boise State Broncos twice in as many tries this weekend. EWU won 3-2 Friday in a shootout and 6-2 Saturday in a decisive victory.

The player of the weekend was freshman goalie Wyatt Monear. Monear was brilliant in both games. Despite BSU outshooting EWU by 10 plus shots on goal in both games, Monear was a wall. Monear also had the game-winning save Friday night.

Monear had 33 saves in the first game and 34 in last night’s contest.

Monear said his focus in Friday’s shootout was to just stop the puck.

“The best I can do is to give my team the chance to win the game,” Monear said.

EWU interim head coach Tyler O’Donnell was proud of the team’s performance over the course of the weekend.

“I feel like the performance built throughout the weekend, like last weekend,” O’Donnell said.  “We took what we did and we built on it.”

Sophomore forward Austin Azzinaro had the game-clinching goal in the shootout Friday night. Azzinaro said the raw emotion he felt was surreal.

“It was just a great feeling,” Azzinaro said. “Butterflies, goosebumps … getting a game-(clinching) goal…(I)  hadn’t had a game-(winning) goal in a long, long time.”

Sophomore forward Reed Kaiser said the team effort was good all-around.

“We really came together tonight,” Kaiser said. “Any win like that is a good team booster.”

Senior forward Shane Smith said that the team’s energy was really good Saturday.

“We were buzzing and the boys were flying around real well,” Smith said.

Senior captain forward Zac Mindermann said he was pleased with the team’s effort.

“We didn’t quit,” Mindermann said. “We just had to dig deep and find it deep within ourselves to keep pushing.”

Freshman defenseman Stephan Hushing III, Kaiser and Azzinaro each scored a goal in the first game. Kaiser, Smith, sophomore forward Mitch Hunt and freshman forward Jake Best each had a goal in the second game. Mindermann had two goals in the second game.

EWU will next play at Western Washington in a two-game series starting Friday, Nov. 1.