Apicella ‘hatty’ leads Tigers past Thunderbirds

By Jim den Hollander 

Editor/Publisher 

Saukhockey.info 

Baraboo-Portage hockey fans likely hadn’t heard of Drew Apicella before Tuesday night, but they know the name now. 

A natural hat trick by the Black River Falls Tigers first year forward to start the game led the visitors to a 5-1 non-conference win against the host Thunderbirds at Pierce Park Pavilion on Tuesday (Jan. 4) night. 

After scoring both first period goals, Apicella wrapped up the ‘trick’ with his third, 5:10 into the second period. The three goals give Apicella seven on the season. 

The Tigers added another middle period goal and a fifth in the third period before first year T-Bird Nathan Gneiser sank an unassisted powerplay goal at the nine-minute mark to shatter the shutout bid of Black River Falls’ sophomore goaltender Christopher Muir.  

It was a well-earned goose egg as Muir stopped 38 shots and carried his team to the win despite a 39-32 edge on the score sheet for the Thunderbirds.  

The loss to the Tigers extended Thunderbirds’ current losing streak to five games and they sit at 2-11 heading into its next game, a Badger West Conference home test against the Oregon Panthers (9-5, Badger West 3-2) on Saturday night. In between the Panthers will be at RACA to face the RWD Cheavers on Thursday night.  

The Tigers are heading in the opposite direction, 9-2 overall and 0-1 in Coulee Conference play. 

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