In the only New Year’s Day game in the NAHL Monday evening, the Austin Bruins were on the road in Mason City to take on the North Iowa Bulls in the third meeting between the two teams in as many nights, and Bruins goaltender Trent Wiemken turned aside all 14 shots he faced, and five different Bruins tallied goals in a 5-0 shutout win.
Gavin Morrissey scored what turned out to be the game-winning goal at 16:58 of the first period, with assists to Parker Anderson and Jack Malinski, and Morrissey then assisted on a power play goal from Malinski only :26 seconds into the second period, with another assist to Walter Zacher, his 13th of the season. Austin Salani then made the score 3-0 Bruins at 15:45 of the period, with assists to Josh Guiliani and Damon Furseth, and the Bruins added two more goals for insurance in the third period, with James Goffredo tallying his 10th of the season 13:17, with an assist to Ocean Wallace, who then assisted on a goal from Parker Anderson at 16:51 of the period, with another assist to Dylan Cook, his 10th on the season.
The shutout for Wiemken was his second of the season, while Bulls goaltender Mitch Day turned aside 19 of the 24 shots he faced to take the loss. The game Monday night was a penalty-filled affair with 12 penalties being called on Austin for 56 minutes, while North Iowa was whistled for 13 penalties for 45 minutes, including 69 minutes of penalties alone in the first period that saw everything from roughing and fighting to head contact that resulted in a five-minute major and a game misconduct against the Bruins at 7:01 of the period.
With the win, Austin now stands eight points clear of second place Aberdeen atop the NAHL’s Central Division at 19-5-3-4 after 31 games, and the Bruins return to Riverside Arena Friday night versus the Wings, with face-off scheduled for 7:05 p.m.