Worth The Wait

The Cobber seniors helped Concordia beat Augsburg in the regular season finale and earn their fourth straight trip to the postseason.
The Cobber seniors helped Concordia beat Augsburg in the regular season finale and earn their fourth straight trip to the postseason.

MOORHEAD, Minn. (2/17/18)---Concordia scored the first two goals against Augsburg and added a pair of empty-net tallies to come away with 4-2 win in the regular season finale.

The Cobbers then endured a nail-biting five hour wait to see if they would earn a spot in the MIAC playoffs. Their victory coupled with a dramatic 4-3 overtime win by St. Olaf over St. Mary's allowed Concordia to secure its sixth straight trip to the conference postseason.

Concordia finishes the regular season with a 10-12-3 overall record. The Cobbers ended league play with a 7-8-1 mark which earned them 23 points in the MIAC standings and the No.5 seed in the upcoming playoffs. Augsburg will be the No.3 seed for the tournament as they finish at 16-9-0 in all games and 10-6-0 in conference action.

The Cobbers had their playoff life taken out of their own hands on Friday when they dropped a 6-3 decision to the Auggies. CC needed to earn a split in the series and hope St. Olaf could pull off the win in Winona.

Concordia started their playoff-clinching day by going up 2-0 in the fourth minute of the second period.

Freshman Beau Wilmer got Concordia on the board in the first period when he took control of the puck at the top of the crease and then slammed home his first collegiate goal at the 8:11 mark. The goal came when the Cobbers were killing off a penalty. Zach Doerring and Bryan Kronberger were awarded the assists.    

Tanner Okeson then doubled Concordia's lead at the 3:25 mark of the second period. The rebound goal would be Okeson's second of the weekend. Doerring and Grebosky picked up the helpers.

Augsburg would seize momentum heading into the third period when they scored their first goal of the game with only 22-seconds left to play in the middle period.

The Cobber defense, and sophomore goalie Jacob Stephan, took over in the third period. CC gave up 16 shots but didn't allow very many quality opportunities.

The final three goals of the game all came in the last minute of play. Grebosky appeared to have put the game on ice when he scored an empty-net goal at the 19:00 mark. Once again Doerring was credited with the assist.

The Auggies then got back to within one goal with 10-seconds left on the clock before Doerring finished off his four-point game with a second empty-net goal at 19:56.

Concordia was outshot 39-24 with the biggest edge coming in the third period when the Cobbers went into a defensive lockdown.

Jake Ellingson led the Cobbers with four shots on goal.

Stephan stopped the first 21 shots he faced in the game and finished with a total of 37 stops. He earned his sixth win of the year.

POINT KING: Zach Doerring's four-point game gave him the team's point total title. Doerring finished with 14 goals and 14 assists for 28 points. He also led the team in conference play with 10 goals and 12 assist for 22 points. Doerring's four points was a career high in a single game and his sixth multiple-point game of the year.

SECOND SEASON OFFERS SECOND CHANCE: Jon Grebosky finished second on the team in scoring for the year with eight goals and 18 assists for 26 points. The 26 points is a career high for Grebosky who now has 95 career points and has a chance to reach the 100-point milestone.  Grebosky's career total ties Jordie Bancroft who played from 2013-16. Both players also had at least 20 points in all four seasons they played for the maroon and gold.

WHAT'S NEXT: Concordia will start their playoff season by playing at No.4 seed Gustavus on Thursday, Feb. 22. The Cobbers and Gusties split their season series which was also played in St. Peter. The regular season series was played last weekend on Feb. 9-10.