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Shutout on senior night: Trojans dominate Redwood Valley 6-0

Feb. 2—WORTHINGTON — For the first time in Easton Newman's varsity hockey career as a Worthington Trojan, his team earned a shutout victory.

It also came with a special memory of his host brother playing in net. Newman is hosting Brazilian native Alvaro Szweierenko Bottcher, who is in his first ever year of playing ice hockey. But that is not to say he is inexperienced between the pipes, as Alvaro has played roller in-line hockey.

"At captain's practice at the start of the season he had lots of trouble on the ice," said Newman, "but he's worked really hard and gotten a lot better over that time and I am glad he got to show his skill tonight."

"The guys did a wonderful job in front of him. I mean, they pretty much always were in shooting lanes ... we played very well defensively," said Worthington coach Tyler Nienkerk. "So they were super happy to see Alvaro get that shut out. I mean, that's a pretty cool thing for him."

The Trojans boys hockey team as a unit has really found its stride in the latter part of the season. With back-to-back wins, including Thursday night's 6-0 win over Redwood Valley on the Trojans' senior night.

"We played pretty well here the last month and a half, even in some of our losses we've played well," said Nienkerk. "This is what we talk about, this is the time of the year where we want to play well, and to keep the momentum."

The Trojans won every period, with sharp passes and extended looks in the Cardinals' zone, but were stonewalled out of a first period goal, despite 13 shots on net.

"I think we outplayed them the whole game, but that first period it's scary to be playing like that and then go in 0-0," said Nienkerk. "But credit to the guys for coming out in the second period and not letting down, they just continued to push."

Opening the scoring was Ian Bumgardner, who was assisted in the first minute of the second period by captain Spenser Nickel.

A few minutes later, Newman scored the first of his hat-trick with an assist from Dawson Duangapai.

Newman's second goal came on a breakaway pass from Alvaro, it also helped cement a personal record night.

"It always feels nice (to get that pass), I felt great during that breakaway," said Newman. "And then getting my 50th point of my career felt great."

Newman was joined in the points column in the third period by fellow captain Caden Van Briesen. Van Briesen scored on assists from Trenton Chantharath and Evan Bumgardner.

Newman's final goal was assisted by Duangapai. Nickel spotted his second assist on the Trojans' final goal which was scored by defenseman Anthony Jimenez on a Trojan power play.

"It's something magical. We obviously have a lot of chemistry playing with all these guys," said Newman. "And it feels great (having) played with these guys my whole life."

"This team has really come together, and it starts with those senior leaders," said Nienkerk. "Not all of them wear the 'C' but they're all leaders, they're just a really great group of kids. It's really been my privilege to coach this group."

The Trojans outshot the Cardinals 38-9, and had just four penalty minutes on two minors, while Redwood Valley had six penalty minutes on three minors.

The Trojans improve to 6-13 on the season and play their final five games of the regular season at home. On Saturday, the Trojans host Breckenridge/Wahpeton at 3 p.m.

Worthington 0 3 3 — 6

Redwood Valley 0 0 0 — 0