By Jim den Hollander
The RWD varsity Cheavers hockey team saw a nine-game winning streak come to an end but continued to show progress against a tough opponent despite falling 4-2 at La Bahn Ice Arena in Madison against the host Madison Edgewood Crusaders.
The Crusaders held a 1-0 lead after a period and carried a 4-1 margin into the third, but a goal for senior C.J. Pfaff 69 seconds into the final period kept the visiting Cheavers in the equation.
That turned out to be the final goal as the host Crusaders, who limited the high-octane Cheavers’ offense to seven shots in both the first and second period, tightened the screws a big more down the stretch, allowing just four in the final 17 minutes.
Meanwhile, the Crusaders who eliminated the Cheavers from Badger West contention with the win, peppered RWD senior goaltender Cooper Oakes with 35 shots.
Senior JJ Wiebusch scored three for the Crusaders and senior Cody Menzel notched the other – both veterans of the prestigious Team Wisconsin Before and After program.
Junior Caden Brandt fired the first RWD goal and grabbed an assist on the Pfaff goal, along with senior Trevor Slaght.
The loss was the first for RWD since Dec. 14 at Oregon and dropped the team’s overall record to 13-6 on the season. More importantly, RWD fell to 5-3 in Badger West contests, snapping a string of three straight wins.
The Cheavers head home for a Thursday (Jan. 20) contest against the Monroe Cheesemakers, its final home game at Reedsburg Area Community Arena and its penultimate Badger West contest.
The Cheavers have just five games remaining on its schedule, hitting the road for three following the Thursday game before wrapping up the regular season at Lake Delton Ice Arena Feb. 8 against the Janesville Bluebirds.