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A spirit that is not afraid

Auburn survives late surge to get first win against Florida State

<p>Brandon Weis in play on the ice during a previous Hockey Club season.</p>

Brandon Weis in play on the ice during a previous Hockey Club season.

The Auburn Ice Hockey Club avoided a late comeback in their 6-3 victory against Florida State, earning their first win of the season. 

The team came out hot, scoring three goals in the first five minutes of the new season. After a quick start, the Tigers continued their dominance, taking a 5-0 lead into the third period. 

“I think we had a good start this game, came out pretty hot and scored three goals early," said defenseman Ryan Scott. "Then we kind of let off the gas a little bit."

The Tigers managed to dominate most of the game, bringing energy not reciprocated by the Seminoles. Auburn put up 72 shots on goal, scoring six unanswered goals.

The Seminoles were able to stay alive in the game thanks to a heroic effort from goalie Stephen Fischer, who saved 66 shots on the night. Auburn’s five third-period penalties allowed Florida State to gain momentum and score three unanswered to make the game 6-3.

“We have got to stay a little more sharp out there," said goalie Cam Denk. "We can’t really afford to keep taking these penalties."

Florida State managed to convert one of Auburn’s third period penalties into a goal, but the Tigers managed to kill off the rest of the their penalties.

“[The penalty kill] looked good. We’re still feeling out guys that will be on both the powerplay and penalty kills," said head coach Ryan Rutz. "I thought we did a pretty good job overall."

Auburn showed improvement from last season’s lackluster powerplay, scoring twice on the man advantage. 

“We worked on the powerplay a little bit in practice this week, and we’re going to adjust it a little bit more," Rutz said. "We’ve got some really skilled players this year, so I think so I think that’s the number one thing, we’re gonna have to score more goals on the powerplay this year."

Auburn had a number of standout performances last night. Forward Chuck Bay finished the game with three assists. Freshman forward Alex Duchemin and defenseman Caleb Patillo both finished with a goal and an assist. 

The Tigers will finish off the season-opening series against Florida State Friday night at the Columbus Ice Rink. Puck drop is at 7 p.m. CST, streaming on Eagle Eye TV and 91.1 WEGL FM.

Chris Mendoza | Sports Writer

Chris Mendoza is a senior from Huntsville, Ala. majoring in journalism and minoring in sports coaching. He started with The Plainsman in fall 2022.

Twitter: @chris_mendoza20

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