The Weber State University hockey team participated in the annual Beehive Showcase on the weekend starting Nov. 15, as they hoped to improve off a 1–3 record in last year’s tournament.
However, it was more of the same as the Wildcats again dropped three of four contests.
In the first game, Williston State College edged out WSU by a final of 5–4. Both the Tetons and Wildcats started quickly, as each scored three goals in the first period.
Halfway through the second period, Williston took advantage of a power play. Payton Okon scored for the Buffalos to make it 4–3 in favor of the visitors.
The ‘Cats had an answer, as Salt Lake City native William Fobair delivered on a power play to tie the game at 4 with five minutes remaining in the second period.
On a fastbreak with 13 minutes left in the game, Weber State sophomore goalie Ryan Scheide was hit and knocked by a Williston player. Due to Scheide’s injury, Kyle Lane stepped in the net to finish the contest.
Scheide was diagnosed with a concussion after the game and was unavailable for the rest of the Beehive Showcase.
Following the goalie switch, the Buffalos scored with 12 minutes remaining to take the lead 5-4. This proved to be the game winner, as the Wildcats were kept out of the net for the remainder of the game.
WSU team captain Jon Cosman was proud of the effort his team showed.
“Hard battle, they were a skilled team,” Cosman said. “I thought we came together really good as a group but a few injuries killed us tonight. We moved the puck well, got some good shots on goal.”
On Nov. 16, the Weber State Wildcats got the best of Dakota College on the ice rink as the hockey team won 5–3 in their second game of the weekend.
The Wildcats second game of the Beehive Showcase got off to a quick start, when both teams found scoring chances and found the back of the net once.
As the teams went into the locker room for the first intermission, more fans started to pile into the ice cold arena as the teams met and made adjustments in the locker room.
The ’Cats scored early in the second period in what they thought would give them the 2–1 lead, but the refs overturned the call on the ice.
Just four minutes later the Wildcats scored again, this time giving them the advantage.
Dakota College answered right back and tied it up. With the score again evened up, the physicality picked up with emotions began running higher.
With 2:10 left, the emotions in the arena went from anxious to excitement as WSU scored once again to push their lead out to 3–2.
During the second intermission, fans got loose and warmed up as they waited in anticipation for what looked to be an exciting closing period. The intermission came to an end with both teams ready to battle.
The ’Cats fought to protect their lead defensively as Dakota College was aggressive on the offensive attack, but WSU kept the puck out of the back of their net after many close calls.
Weber State added an insurance goal with five minutes remaining that proved to be a major factor when Dakota College found the back of the net 30 seconds after 4–3.
WSU sealed the deal with an empty net goal giving the Wildcats a 5–3 win and their first of win of the showcase.
The next night, the Michigan State Spartans wore the Wildcats down early to hand them a 6–3 loss.
Weber State started the first period off quickly with a goal in the third minute by senior forward Troy Quarnberg, assisted by Brian Martinez.
Michigan State responded with three goals of their own, and the Wildcats were not able to recover. Forbair was disqualified midway through the first period for making contact to the head of a Michigan State player.
Cosman and forward Joel Johnson scored for WSU to keep the score respectable, but it was ultimately a three-goal defeat.
The next morning, the Wildcats did not awaken in time as they fell 7–1 to the University of Northern Colorado to finish the weekend.
Despite the three defeats, head coach A.J. Kapinos said it was an overall positive experience.
“Overall, it felt like our guys showed a lot of good effort,” Kapinos said. “It’s a four game weekend, and we have guys who are really banged up. We had to make a lot of lineup changes, but I think guys fought hard. We just had a few more mistakes than we would have hoped.”
The Wildcats struck first from a goal by junior center Zan Hobbs three minutes into the game, but that is all they would get on the day.
“It was a good confidence booster, and I thought we would build off it,” Hobbs said. “But they scored a few quick ones, and it kind of shut down our intensity.”
Northern Colorado scored twice before the end of the first period and never looked back.
UNC found the scoreboard twice more in the second period. They completely put the contest out of reach with three goals in the third and final stanza, including two in a 60-second span.
“Our guys were trying really hard, but we had a lot of players in positions they don’t always play,” Kapinos said. “Overall, there were just four or five big mistakes in there and they capitalized.”
The ‘Cats will take on Northern Arizona University, Arizona State University, and Grand Canyon University down south from Nov. 29 to Dec. 2.