The Rhinelander High School boys' hockey team started strong on Thursday night in the Great Northern Conference match, but would fade in the final two-periods. Antigo would score four-straight goals to push past Rhinelander 6-2 at the Rhinelander Ice Arena.
The Hodags fell to 4-3-0 in the GNC and are now 7-4-0 overall. The Robins would open the scoring on the night, but Rhinelander responded each time and would tie the game up 2-2 after the first 17 minutes of action. But from that point, RHS faded and Antigo took advantage and would score four straight to earn the 6-2 win.
Brennan Spencer of the Robins didn't waste much time and scored at 1:54 in the first-period to put Antigo ahead 1-0. Rhinelander sophomore Abe Laggis responded on an assist from senior Nick Sandstrom to tie the game up at the 7:45 mark.
And at 10:41 CJ Levis of Antigo would tack on the Robins' second goal and give them a one-goal lead. But just like the previous goal, the Hodags took advantage of their shots in the first period. Freshman Harlan Wojotusik scored late in the first on an assist from junior Sam Tjugum to tie the contest up 2-2. That would prove to Rhinelander's final goal of the night.
Antigo's Jack Shinners scored at the 2:00 minute mark in the second period on an assist from Broden Bunnell to give the Robins a 3-2 lead and they never looked back. From there, Antigo tallied a pair of power play goals to extend their lead.
Levis would score his second goal of the night for the Robins at 4:46 on their first power play goal of the night. And again at 12:38, Antigo's Garett Held scored on a Rhinelander penalty to put the Robins up 5-2.
Rhinelander Senior Matthias Schneider would have both the Hodags’ penalized on the night, the first was boarding at 4:34 in the second. And yet again at 10:43, Schneider was called for tripping.
In the final period, Levis charted his hat trick at the 1:17 mark, and the Robins would go on to earn the four-goal victory. The Robins advanced to 3-1-0 in the conference and are 4-7-1 overall.
The Robins held a 52-17 advantage on shots on the night, and goalie Seth Stafford collected 46 saves in the loss. Rhinelander had most of their shots in the first period, but were still outshot 18-10.
Rhinelander fell to 4-3-0 in the GNC and are now 7-5-0 after winning their first seven contests. The Hodags also go senior Cole Spaulding back in the lineup after missing the last four games.
The Hodags will host Kingsford Friday at the Rhinelander Ice Arena, starting at 7:00PM. RHS will return to their GNC schedule on Tuesday and will host Mosinee.