Defensive Showcase In Season Opener

Sophomore Jacob Stephan made 21 saves in the Cobbers' season-opening overtime tie against Gustavus.
Sophomore Jacob Stephan made 21 saves in the Cobbers' season-opening overtime tie against Gustavus.

BLAINE, Minn. (10/28/17)--- If the first game of the 2017-18 season is a sign of things to come for Concordia then fans can expect a lot of defensive showcases. The Cobbers used an air-tight blue line crew and solid goaltending from sophomore Jacob Stephan to come away with a 1-1 overtime against Gustavus in the first game of the annual MIAC Showcase.

Concordia only allowed 22 shots on goal in the 65 minutes of play as they allowed fewer than two goals in the opening game for the second straight season.

After playing to a scoreless tie in the first period, the Gusties opened the scoring with less than two minutes remaining in the second period. GUstavus netted their only goal of the game at the 18:07 mark to take the 1-0 lead.

The Cobber power play unit tied the game at the start of the third period. Senior captain Zach Doerring recorded the first goal of the year for the Cobbers when he fired home the man-advantage nugget at the 5:38 mark of the final period in regulation. Linemates Jon Grebosky and Mario Bianchi earned the assists on Doerring's 15th career goal.

The game went back-and-forth for the final 14 minutes of regulation with the Cobbers holding a 6-5 edge in shots during that stretch.

Gustavus then held a 3-1 advantage in shots in the 5-minute overtime session but neither team could come away with the game winner. The teams went through a shootout after the overtime period just for practice for the regular season and the Gusties made good on all three of their chances while CC finished two of their three.

The Guties held a 22-18 edge in shots on goal for the game. Grebosky and Bianchi led Concordia with three shots each.

The Cobbers went 1-for-6 on the power play while the CC penalty killers held the GAC power play unit off the board in their three attempts.

Stephan turned aside 21 shots and is now 4-3-1 in his Cobber career.     

SHOT STUFF: The 22 shots allowed by the Cobbers is the fewest by an opponent since the 11th game of last season when they gave up 21 against Wis.-Stout on Dec. 9. The game against Stout was the only contest of last year where they allowed fewer than 25 shots in a game.    

WHAT'S NEXT: Concordia will finish off the MIAC Showcase when they square off against reigning MIAC playoff champion Augsburg on Sunday, Oct. 29 at 2:30 p.m. at the Schwann Super Rink in Blaine. The Auggies beat Gustavus in overtime on Friday in the MIAC Showcase.