Beeler’s hat trick lifts hockey to 4-1 win

by Samuel Johnson, Sports

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The Spring Lake/Grand Haven hockey team traveled to Kalamazoo to square off against the Kalamazoo United on Saturday, December 3. The varsity boys from Spring Lake and Grand Haven pulled out a 4-1 victory over the home team, which featured players from Loy Norrix, Hackett Catholic Prep, and Kalamazoo Central High School.

The Bucs ended with a stalemate in the first period, 0-0. But they continued to attack the net and put pressure on Kalamazoo’s goalie. They exploded offensively in the second period, scoring 4 goals.

Three of those were courtesy of a hat trick by Spring Lake senior, Branden Beeler, and the other was netted by Jake Johnson. Great passes resulted in assists for Austin Fox, Ethan Pennington, Trevor Kalis, and Alex Kure. Goalie Finn Bylsma put forth an efficient performance, allowing only one goal and getting the win.

Beeler spoke about the onslaught of goals in the second period, stating, “We were able to get a lot of shots within a short amount of time and knew we needed to keep hammering shots and moving our feet.”

When asked about a possible difference in offensive success between the first two periods, Beeler said, “ Our play wasn’t too different; we just managed to capitalize on our opportunities.”

The Bucs continued their aggressive game plan and were able to punish their opponents for their mistakes, scoring on power play opportunities. Beeler has high hopes for his team as they continue their season.

“With it being my last year in the program, I want us to make a playoff run. We were very close to winning the conference last year, and I would love to see the boys come together and win a conference championship.” The hat trick connoisseur explained that, although the team is young, “with our work ethic and the way we work as a team, we can reach our goals.”

The Bucs will look to improve their record against Hudsonville on December 15, at the Lakeshore Sports Center.

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Beeler’s hat trick lifts hockey to 4-1 win