NU Steel outscores North Iowa 6-5
NEW ULM — Wins have not come easily for the New Ulm Steel — the youngest team in the West Division of the NA3HL — this season.
But Sunday afternoon, youth stepped up and flexed some muscle.
Josh Delange scored his first two goals of the season as the Steel won just their fifth game of season, topping West Division-leading North Iowa 6-5 in an NA3HL game at the New Ulm Civic Center.
It was only the seventh loss of the season for the Bulls who fell to 22-7-1 on the year.
Joey Gimberlin, Nate Looft, Jake Saver and James Spaargaren each scored goals for New Ulm who improved to 5-19-3 on the year.
Corey Stormer and Spaargaren each had two assists with Delange, Gimberlin, Loeft and Zach Mallette each adding a helper.
Steel goaltender Griffin Foster stopped 32 of 37 Bulls’ shots in the game.
“We finally got out of the goal-scoring drought a little bit and to do it against North Iowa is special, “ Steel coach Zach Stepan said. “We seem to do a good job with them in our building. We are a very young team and so it takes longer to get players to play like they need to at the Junior Hockey level. We have played very well in our last three games.”
The Steel took a 1-0 lead over the Bulls when Jake Saver scored his second goal of the season at the 12:33 mark on assists from Gimberlin and Looft.
North Iowa tied the game on a Carson Jones’ goal before Joey Gimberlin regained the lead for the Steel with his seventh goal of the year at 15:01.
North Iowa tied the game at 2-2 three minutes later on a Cal Nauss goal.
Delange’s first goal of the game at the 18:50 mark lifted the Steel to a 3-2 lead after the first 20 minutes.
North Iowa again tied the game midway though the second period, but again the Steel came back to retake the lead at 4-3 on a Looft power play goal.
Once again the West Division-leading Bulls knotted the game at 4-4.
Then the Steel scored twice in a matter of 17 seconds when Delange and Spaargaren scored goals for a 6-4 lead.
The Bulls cut the lead to 6-5 with less than three minutes to go in the second period.
The third period saw no scoring as the Steel earned the win.
“We finally had the hockey gods grant us a couple extra goals today which was big,” Stefan said. “This was North Iowa’s third game in three days but they are also a really good hockey team. Every time North Iowa scored, we responded.”