It was a historic night at the Oregon Ice Arena Tuesday.
For the first time in program history, the Monroe co-op defeated Oregon on Tuesday night 4-3 in the Badger South opener for both teams in boys hockey.
Monroe, which formed its co-op program with several other small schools in southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois for the 2012-13 season, was 0-14 all-time against Oregon heading into Tuesday night's game. Last year, the teams played in two one-goal contests, including an overtime game in Oregon last January.
This time, it was Monroe edging the Panthers, and in the process writing some new notes in their history books.
In the first period, Oregon jumped out with a pair of goals just 40 seconds apart, both scored by Kyle Rohrer at the 11:28 and 10:48 time remaining marks in the first period. Rohrer, who missed two games so far this season, got his first points of the year in this game.
With the Panthers in front 2-0 not even midway through the second period, Monroe got to work. Hayden Roth used his speed to find some room to work near the net to cut the deficit in half almost right at the halfway point of the first period, with 8:26 remaining, and Monroe tied it up a few minutes later when Payton Stauffacher blasted in a shot with 4:46 left in the opening frame.
Monroe wasn't done scoring yet, coming out of the first intermission with a goal just 68 seconds into the second period. This time, it was Cooper Dryfus lighting the lamp, giving the Cheesemakers their first lead of the night.
Oregon had a chance to tie the game back up when Dryfus was sent to the penalty box with 11:01 left in the second period for elbowing, but the Panthers returned the favor when Rohrer was sent aside as well for tripping at the 9:41 remaining mark of the second period. That ended Oregon's power play and set up 40 seconds of four-on-four hockey.
It took just 15 seconds for Monroe to take advantage of the extra space on the ice, as Roth got his second goal of the game with 9:26 left in the second period. That made the score 4-2. Monroe killed off one more penalty in the frame to go into the second intermission up by two goals.
Oregon made their push early on in the third period. Parker Schmidt blasted a shot in from right point that was deflected in by Rohrer for his third goal of the game, bringing the score within one goal. The Panthers stayed relentless on offense, but a pair of penalties in the final period forced them on their heels a bit as they had to kill off four minutes of penalty time in the final 10:41 of the game.
Coming off of the second penalty, Spencer Buskager left the penalty box to find a loose puck in front of him and a clear path to the goal, with only goalie Heath Bear to beat. Buskager decided to go wide side of the goal, but Bear gloved the shot with 2:55 left in the game to preserve the 4-3 lead.
From there, Monroe held on to secure the program's first-ever win over Oregon in 15 tries, and only the fifth conference win in school history. The win also brought the Cheesemakers' record to 6-1, tied for the second-most wins in a season in program history as well.
11:28 1P - Oregon Goal - Rohrer (Orosz)
10:48 1P - Oregon Goal - Rohrer (Buskager, Orosz)
8:26 1P - Monroe Goal - Roth (Dryfus, Stauffacher)
4:46 1P - Monroe Goal - Stauffacher (Bauer, Janecke)
15:52 2P - Monroe Goal - Dryfus (Janecke, Roth)
11:01 2P - Monroe Penalty - Dryfus (Elbowing)
9:41 2P - Oregon Penalty - Rohrer (Tripping)
9:26 2P - Monroe Goal - Roth (Dillon, Stauffacher)
3:11 2P - Monroe Penalty - Kuberski (Holding)
11:33 3P - Oregon Goal - Rohrer (Schmidt)
10:41 3P - Oregon Penalty - Buskager (Hooking)
5:02 3P - Oregon Penalty - Buskager (Elbowing)
Monroe Power Play: 0-3
Oregon Power Play: 0-2
Saves: Heath Bear (Monroe) 29, Colton Dailey 21
Shots: Monroe 25, Oregon 32
Penalties: Oregon 3-6:00, Monroe 2-4:00
Tuesday, December 10, 2019 - Oregon Ice Arena