Boys Varsity Ice Hockey
|Milford High School||6|
|Fenton Senior High School||4|
Austin Combs kicked off his high school hockey career in stellar fashion with a four goal, one assist night to help lead Milford to a 6-5 win over fellow Hartland rink mates, the Fenton/Linden Griffins, November 14.
The Mavs took a 1-0 lead on a power play goal from Kaz Bowring with an assist from Mav Senior Captain Sam Hewitt, at 11:04 of the first. Combs followed with an unassisted goal at 6:37 for a 2-0 Mav lead. The Griffins drew within one with an unassisted goal by Jesse Bitner with 3 minutes remaining in the first, but Milford answered with just 30 seconds to go in the period, Combs from Senior Captain Kevin Mozel to give the Mavs a 3-1 lead after one.
Milford pulled ahead by 3 with Combs netting his hat trick with assists to Junior Ben Kozar and Hewitt early in the second period. The Griffins got to within two with 5:28 to go in the second, Brendan Miles from Kenneth Sorum, but the Mavs responded two minutes later, Combs with his fourth with helpers from Mozel and Hewitt to stake Milford to a seemingly comfortable 3 goal lead after two periods.
The Griffins were not to be denied and scored two goals early in the third to make it 5-4, the first at 13:32, Dylan Conte from Adrien Ganslandt and Miles, the second 30 seconds later, Josh Appleberg unassisted.
The Mavs kept the corral door closed over the next seven minutes, with Junior Goaltender Tyler Kerr making several key saves during the Griffin onslaught to preserve Milford's one goal lead. The Mavs added to their lead on an outstanding all out effort goal by Hewitt, who ended up with one goal and three assists, with one of the better helpers you'll see at any level from Austin Combs.
Fenton/Linden pulled their goalie and scored with 22 seconds remaining, Zach Eakes from Appleberg, to make it 6-5.
Milford's Kerr ended up with 30 saves, while his counterparts for Fenton/Linden, Liam Murray and Loren Jones combined for 20 saves on 26 shots.
"We needed that game," exclaimed Milford Coach Gagnon in a joyous Mav locker room. "What a great start for AC, Hew and TK. Sure was nice to put six up against a very good, well-coached Griffins club. They're going to win a lot of games this year."
The Mavs will enjoy this one before they head up to Sault Ste. Marie to face an always tough Soo Blue Devils and the Big Rapids Cardinals, coached by Tim Blashill, brother of Red Wings' Coach Jeff Blashill, in the Soo Showcase.