UNLV Hockey tamed Wildcats in weekend sweep

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Landon Pavlisin using his blocker to deflect the puck away from the net. Photo courtesy of UNLV Hockey.

The UNLV Skatin’ Rebels tamed the Arizona Wildcats with a 2-0 series sweep over the weekend. 

The Rebels kicked off the weekend with a 4-2 win against the University of Arizona Wildcats. 

The Rebels are currently ranked No.4 in the American College Hockey Association (ACHA), dropping a rank after a 5-1 loss to the Utah Utes. The three stars of the night were Max Johnson, Robert McCollum, and Landon Pavlisin.

Arizona put itself on the board with a goal from forward Jesse Lowell holding the lead for five minutes.

The Rebels responded with two goals, the first goal from forward Max Johnson and the second from defenseman Mattias Dal Monte, ending the period with a 2-1 lead. 

UNLV kept the fire burning in the second period, kicking it off with a goal from Cole Wyatt. Within the span of 18 seconds, Brendan Manning sealed the win with a goal, assisted by forward Gunnar Smith.

The Wildcats attempted a comeback in the third period, but only managed to score a singular goal, coming from Brody Selman. Things got heated, with Jaxsen Wyatt drawing a major spearing and game misconduct penalty, causing a five-minute power play for the Wildcats. 

However, the Rebels remained on top and won the game 4-2 despite playing the backend of the third period short-handed.

The battle of the rankings continues as Arizona battles to make the top 15, and the Rebels fight to make the top three. Head coach Anthony Greener shared the importance of this win. 

“They put in the work that they did today and continue to do the good things and get four points and then essentially you end Arizona’s bid to go to the national tournament, which you always want to do with a conference opponent,” Greener said. 

Game 2

Game two saw the Rebels battle for a 6-2 victory, Jayson DiMizio, Bradley Golant, and Mattias Dal Monte earned the three stars of the night.

Despite the win, the Rebels had trouble staying out of the penalty box, gaining a total of thirteen penalties, including three game misconducts. 

 Luke Burke kicked off the first period with a goal, assisted by Robert McCollum.

 The Rebels continued their offensive push with goals from Dal Monte and Cole Wyatt to put the Rebels up 3-0.

Big hits and fights entertained the crowd throughout the period, as Kyle Quinn and Connor Ziegler both pushed each other around after the whistle.

The second period did not see much scoring action, as Jesse Lowell scored one of two goals for the Wildcats. Arizona remained on the power play for most of the period, as the penalty problems grew. 

“They have a good power play. They’re a skilled team and can move quickly, but we stuck to our game and turned out alright,” said Dal Monte.

The period ended with a big fight after one of the Wildcats crashed into net minder Landon Pavlisin. Brendan Manning got a game misconduct from the fight.

The penalty box did not stop UNLV. Dal Monte, Golant, and Alec Johnson managed to keep the Rebels on top in the third. 

  Both teams took multiple penalties, with Arizona taking six out of nine penalties in the period. With tension between the two at a high, another scrap broke out, sending one of each team to the box.

“Overall, I thought special teams were really good. Our power play was strong and we had some big [penalty] kills,” said Dal Monte.

UNLV Hockey will go on the road next weekend to Tempe, Arizona as they face off against the ASU Sun Devils Friday, Feb. 17 at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, Feb. 18 at 7:30 p.m.

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