Lynx Finish Perfect Season by Dismantling Cougars

Whoever said perfection was impossible must’ve been lying because the Dimond High Hockey team completed their perfect season by thrashing Service 6-1 in the state championship hockey game on Saturday. The Lynx went 26-0 out scoring their opponents 198 to 32 throughout the season. This was the first time ever in Alaska high school hockey history that a team went undefeated for the entire season. It is no secret that in previous years the Dimond hockey team has had some tough times during the state tournament. The team had not won a state title since 2001, despite the fact that they had made it to the championship game 8 out of those 11 years. This year’s championship game was a rematch of last year’s state semifinal game in which Service put a dent in Dimond’s perfect season by beating them 2-1 and ending their seemingly hopeful season. The emotions from that game were still in the back of many of the players’ minds as they hit the ice for Saturday’s championship game. Senior Daniel Roberts said that last years game against Service “made it all the more important to win it this year.” The win was especially satisfying for senior Tyler Thompson and Roberts because both of them have played with the varsity team during the state tournament since their freshman year. During their freshman year they lost to Lathrop in the championship game, Sophomore year they lost to West during the Championship game, and finally last year, their junior year, they lost the semifinal game to Service. Thompson said, “Losing those first three years made the win this year so much more satisfying and worth it.” The Lynx men made it to the championship game by demolishing Wasilla 6-1 in the quarterfinals, and blanking Lathrop in the semifinals 4-0. The Cougars however, had a tougher time getting to the Championship game. They barely squeaked by first round opponent Palmer 2-1, and also had a hard time getting through the semifinals by beating South 3-2. The faithful Dimond fans who made the drive out to the Menard Sports Complex in Wasilla were on the edge of their seats until Sophomore Drake Glover scored the first goal of the game towards the end of the first period. However, it wasn’t until just ten seconds later that the fans could rest a little easier. Lane Bauer, a sophomore, scored the Lynx second goal which proved to be the game winning goal. Although the first period would end with the Lynx on top 2-0, the Lynx men did not take long to get the scoring started when the game started back up again. Just two minutes into the second period Sophomore Josh Larson shoved the puck past Service goalie Dustin Fritz to extend the Lynx lead to 3-0. Goals seemed to come in pairs for the Lynx as Roberts scored just 25 seconds later off of an assist from Bauer, making it 4-0. Service soon decided that four unanswered goals was too many as they cut the lead to three with a goal from Miles Giorgione while on the power play. It wasn’t until the end of the period that Dimond scored again with a goal from Senior Aaron Dunlap. Finally the Lynx finished the game off with a power play goal from Senior Shilo Vega. Th e game ended with the Dimond players rushing off of the bench and jumping onto each other in a huge dog pile in celebration of a perfect season finished off with a State Championship. The lone freshman on Varsity, Walker Hamilton, said that “it was a great opportunity to play on Varsity for my freshman year,” and that he will “miss the seniors and the good attitudes and spirit that they brought to every game.” However, he also mentions that he is “looking forward to doing the same thing next year.”