The Austin Bruins finished out a stretch of five preseason games in eight days with a thrilling overtime battle with the Sioux City Musketeers, but in the end, the scoreboard favored the visitors 5-4 in overtime. Nick Pierre scored both the opening and closing goals of the game for the Musketeers who swept the Bruins in the two-game set.
Despite the early start time of the game, both teams came out flying in the first period. A physical presence took over from the getgo, something that boiled over from Friday night’s contest. Unfortunately for the Bruins, it was Sioux City who registered the game’s first goal, and less than two-and-a-half minutes into the opening frame. Pierre, a future Wisconsin Badger, found some daylight between the leg pads of Bruins netminder Zach Hansen and handed his Musketeers teammates the 1-0 lead. Austin didn’t wait long to retaliate with a score of their own coming off the stick of rookie Therien Thiesing who ripped a wrister from the right point through traffic and through the pads of Sioux City’s goalie, Alex Tracy. Both teams entered the first intermission with the score deadlocked at 1-1.
In the second, Austin surrendered a goal to former Bismarck Bobcat Kirklan Irey but rebounded by scoring three goals in less than two minutes to take a 4-2 lead. The three-goal run began with Ben Oakland who scored an unassisted goal off a turnover in the offensive zone, followed by Connor Mylymok who pounded home a close-proximity goal with help from Barrett Brooks, and capping off their busy two minutes, Peter Jacobs squeaked a shot through several bodies in front and found the back of the net.
Sioux City wasn’t willing to give in, as they began the third period with a powerplay tally off the stick of Bennett Schimek, his second goal of the weekend, pulling the game closer at 4-3. Still with the one-goal lead, the Bruins held of Sioux City until the final four minutes but at the 3:47 mark, Nikita Krivokrasov evened things at 4-4 with a blast from the left point.
In overtime, the pace was frenzied and quick on both sides. Each goaltender was strongly tested in the early going. The Bruins best chance came on a Connor Mylymok opportunity moments before the game’s end. Mylmymok had a beat on the defense and was bearing in on Tracy when he was drug down from behind. The referee’s arm stayed down and the result of the play was a two-on-none the other way in favor of Sioux City. Nick Pierre handled a pass and transitioned into a breakaway where he beat Hansen for the game-winner.
Up next for the Bruins, they take on the Kenai River Brown Bears on Friday, October 16th in Breezy Point, MN. The two teams will come to southern Minnesota on Saturday night, October 17, for an encore at Riverside Arena. It will be the final preseason game for the Bruins before beginning the regular season on October 30 at Aberdeen.