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WSU men’s hockey wins Wasatch Cup

Players scramble to gain control of the puck.

The Weber State men’s hockey team recently hosted the Wasatch Cup. The Wildcats faced off against Utah Valley University on Friday night, Feb. 2 and the University of Utah in the final on Saturday, Feb. 3.

In the first game of the Wasatch Cup on Feb. 2, U of U faced off against Utah State University for a spot in the final to face either Utah Valley or Weber State University. The Utes defeated the Aggies 3–2, with a fastbreak goal in overtime from Jack Umina.

The Wildcats went up against UVU shortly after for a chance to lift the Wasatch Cup. After three periods of a hard-fought contest, the Wildcats came out on top with a 6–2 victory over the Wolverines.

The Wolverines started the game off fast and aggressive, after being down 2–0 at the beginning of the second period, the Wildcats executed on a Wolverine power play, 5 vs. 4. With goals from Andrew Alonzo, Cory Mater and Cole VanOrman, the Wildcats headed into the third period with a 3–2 lead over the Wolverines.

After an impressive second period, WSU kept the momentum swinging with three more goals on the tally sheet in the third period. Mater was the first to score for the Wildcats in the third period, marking his second goal of the night, this was his 20th goal this season for Weber State. Luke Artukovich scored the fifth goal for the ‘Cats and Jacobi Clark ended the game with the sixth goal.

With the consolation game set in place with Utah Valley facing off against Utah State, The Aggies came out victorious over the Wolverines 4–2 on Feb. 3, to finish third place in the Wasatch Cup. After losing back-to-back games, Utah Valley finishes fourth.

The final was set for the Wasatch Cup, Weber State went against the University of Utah. In a back-and-forth matchup between these two hockey powerhouses, the Wildcats kept resilience and lifted the trophy with a 7–4 win over the Utes.

Despite the scoreline, this game was as close as it could have been. The Utes started the first period strong with an early goal to give them a 1–0 lead. After being down most of the period, Jack Jones tied the game for the Wildcats. VanOrman scored the second goal for the ‘Cats and shortly after, Utah answered right back to equal the game. To end the first period, Mater scored the third goal for the ‘Cats giving them a 3–2 lead heading into the second period.

Starting the second period, Nick Demchuk scored the fourth goal for the Wildcats to give them a 4–2 lead. Once again, the Utes found a way to make it a game with a fast break goal to make it 4–3. Alonzo made it a two-goal deficit with a one vs. one slap shot against the Utes goalie. With only a minute left in the second frame, the Utes found another trick under their sleeve as they made it a one-goal game heading into the third period.

To end the Wasatch Cup the Wildcats finished the third period the best way they could have, with a goal from Rob Simmons in the last minute of the game. This gave the Wildcats their third two-goal lead. With 30 seconds remaining in the game, Alonzo with his second goal of the game iced it for the Wildcats with an empty net goal to give the Wildcats a 7–4 win over the Utes.

“For us, I think the team has really come together and it’s not always going to go perfect, it’s great to see that we’re picking it up at the right time of the season and hopefully we can keep this going for the remainder of the season,” head coach Yosh Ryujin said.

After the Wasatch Cup celebrations, the Wildcats will be traveling to Logan, Utah to compete in the annual Mount West Cup from Feb. 8-10. The Wildcats will be back at the Ice Sheet on Feb. 17 with a rival game against Utah State.

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Collyn Cowles
Collyn Cowles, Sports editor

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    BrendaFeb 7, 2024 at 6:18 pm

    Love that you experienced Weber Hockey. It’s so much fun. Great over view of the weekend.
    Thank you!