The Austin Packers boys hockey team closed out the home portion of their 2023-2024 regular season versus the Worthington Trojans in a non-conference game at Riverside Arena Tuesday evening, and although the Packers jumped out to a 2-0 lead, it was the Trojans netting the next four goals, including three on the power play in a 4-2 win and a split of the regular-season series between the two clubs.
Cody Peterson netted his second goal of the season at 4:38 of the first period to give Austin a 1-0 lead as he knocked in a rebound off of a backhand shot from Grady Carney, who picked up his team-leading sixth assist of the game, and another assist went to Gavin Brekke, his third. The Packers made it 2-0 at 7:11 of the second period when Isaac Anderson intercepted a breakout pass from behind the Worthington net and quickly snapped a wrist shot past Trojan goaltender Brody Peterson from point blank range. Unfortunately for Austin, the tide of the game began going against them at 11:31 of the period when forward Spencer Nickel, Worthington’s leading goal scorer tallied to make the score 2-1, and the Trojan power play, which was 6 for 37 coming into the game for 16.2% then tied the game at 2 with a goal from forward Easton Newman at 12:39. Another power play tally for the Trojans, this one from defenseman Anthony Jiminez at 13:55 of the period gave Worthington their first lead of the game at 3-2, and another power play goal from Newman 7:12 of the third period accounted for the 4-2 final.
The Packers were outshot 41-20 for the game, and Austin was whistled for eight penalties, four of them in the second period for 16 minutes, while Worthington was called for four penalties for eight minutes. Austin was 1 for 4 on the power play, while the Trojans were 3 for 8, and junior netminder Daran Plunkett turned aside 37 of the 41 shots he faced for the Packers, while Pederson made 18 saves to earn the win betwen the pipes for the Trojans.
Austin is now 4-16 on the season, and the Packers will now hit the road for their last five games of the regular season, starting in Winona Friday night against the Winhawks, with face-off at 7:15 p.m.