Beloit upsets Janesville in regional hockey
Kolin Hamilton’s one-timer from Jeff Edwards with 1 minute, 11 seconds remaining gave Beloit its first victory over Janesville since 2004.
Woodman, the Purple Knights’ goaltender, was rock-solid, making 30 saves on 31 shots, including 11 saves in the third period and a pair of man-up or else breakaways. Janesville’s Tyler Lewis and Collin Cropp combined for 18 saves.
As teammates piled on Woodman in celebration and Beloit coach Mark Edwards heaped praise on his senior goaltender, sophomore forward Joey Dencker may have made the largest contribution to a victory that put Beloit (16-7) in Tuesday’s sectional semifinals against fifth-ranked Milwaukee Marquette.
“He scored the first goal,” Bluebirds coach John Mauermann said. “It gave them the momentum and the confidence, and that makes a difference in attitude.”
Beloit came to Janesville with an attitude.
“The attitude was that we were the underdogs,” said Edwards. “We had nothing to lose here. We wanted to go into it with that attitude.’’
Dencker ripped a shot that hit the top-right corner of the net and put the Knights up 1-0, at 7:22 of the second period. Janesville’s Brad Money answered 32 seconds later with an assist from Mo McCrone to knot it 1-1.
But it was Beloit that sent the message first, and the Knights continued to take the fight to Janesville.
Mauermann said the Bluebirds should have made that first statement.
“Shame on us for missing the net in the first period when we had the chances,” said Mauermann, whose team finished with 15-6-1 record. “We got outshot 9-5 in the first, so shame on us for not coming out (hard), and give Beloit credit for coming out hard.’’
The Bluebirds defeated the Purple Knights by a combined score of 7-2 in the two regular-season Big Eight Conference games. Mauermann said Beloit’s play improved in the third period of a 3-1 loss in a regular-season finale, and it kept on going in the regional final.
“Based on the game we had a week before, they came back with some momentum,” Mauermann said. “They played a good third period, and they came back (Friday) inspired, and then we came out and let them keep that momentum.”
The Bluebirds pounded Woodman with 11 shots in the third period that he did not let hit home.
“Give Zach (Woodman) credit, because we had the chances, and he came through,” Mauermann said. “That’s what the game is all about.’’
For the game-winner, Hamilton was standing alone in front of the goal when Edwards zipped the puck to him from the right corner.
“We just didn’t cover the guy in the front (of the net),” Mauermann said. “(Edwards) centered it to (Hamilton), and he just slapped it in.”
And Joey Dencker celebrated with Woodman and rest of the Knights.
BELOIT 2, JANESVILLE 1
Beloit Memorial 0 1 1—2
Janesville 0 1 0—1
BM—Joey Dencker (Cody Ferguson), 2:48. J—Brad Money (Mo McCrone), 2:48.
BM—Kolin Hamilton (Jeff Edwards), 1:11.
Saves—Zach Woodman (BM) 30, Tyler Lewis (J) 7, Collin Cropp 11.