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Miners return home with win in game two

11/06/2018, 9:00am MST
By UTEP Hockey //

Miners closeout final roadtrip of the first semester

The Miners wrapped up non-conference play with a their final roadtrip west to New Mexico. Following another weekend of physical play, the Miners came home with a win in game two but tied with the Lobos in game one. Friday night's game would see eight lead changes and numerous penalties. Sophomore John-Luke Prystayko gots the nod in goal, his fourth start of the season.

The puck dropped at Outpost Ice Arena and ten minutes would pass before Carlo Wittor would strike off a pass from Austin Simpson to open the scoring on night one. A little more than a minute later, Lobos would get one passed Prystayko and the score is tied at one goal each. Simpson once again sets up Wittor and the Miners take a 2-1 lead with 6:07 to go in the first period. Jake Kopinski gets sent to the penalty box for two minutes for slashing. Lobos utilize their man advantage and score. Both teams head to the locker room tied at two goals.

Wittor on a hot streak finds the back of the net, completes the hat trick and gives the Miners a 3-2 lead with 16:15 to go in the third period. Lobos get handed a two minute minor and Kopinski scores adding to the Miner total. Austin Simpson is credited with the assist, his third point for the night. Another string of Miner penalties puts the Lobos on a 5-on-3 advantage, Lobos score and come within one goal of the Miners, 4-3, with seven minutes remaining in the second period. Prystayko heads to the bench, adding an extra player on the ice for UTEP. Lobos get called for slashing and teams go back to even strength for the remaining seven seconds of the Miners penalty. Back on the power play, Keenan Conaty gets a good look and scores his first goal as a Miner and increases the lead to 5-3 to end the period. 

Ready for the final twenty minutes, Jon Sanca assisted by line mates Matt Sanca and Noah Vanderzwan opens the scoring with just over a minute into the third period. Holding a 6-3 lead, the Lobos go on a goal streak and tie the game with 10:19 to go in the final period. Tallying his fourth point of the night, Wittor passes the puck to Jayden Ritchie and the Miners take the lead with just over eight minutes to go in the game. The Lobos weren't done yet, as they get one passed Prystayko and send the game into overtime. 

The bonus period begins and after fives minutes of play the score remains tied. However, due to ACHA rules the game did not go into a shootout and would instead end in a tie.

Following a frustrating night, the Miners were ready to rebound in game two and bring home the win. Back with a different lineup and Angus Campbell between the pipes, the puck dropped for game two. Similar to night one the first half of the period goes scoreless. Fabian Calderon assisted by Simpson and Wittor puts the Miners on the board first. With seconds left in the period, Wittor, Calderon and Simpson are successful again and Wittor makes it a 2-0 Miner lead at the end of the first period.

Tensions run high during the second period but the Lobos are unable to answer the two Miners goals by Kopinski and Wittor and the Miners keep a 4-0 lead at the buzzer.

The Lobos open the third period scoring their first goal of the night with 17:24 to go in the game. Hoping to not repeat last night, Calderon scores his second goal of the night and the Miners take a 5-1 lead. Lobos would score one more time but the Miners hold on and win the game, 5-2.

Continuing with this season's trend, the Miners came out strong offensively. Miners scored 12 total goals this weekend by six different Miners. This weekend was the fourth highest scoring weekend for UTEP. Carlo Wittor scored his first hat trick in his collegiate career, bringing his total goals scored this season to 13 ranking him second overall on the team. Austin Simpson tallied eight points against UNM, one point shy of his career high. The line of Fabian Calderon, Carlo Wittor and Austin Simpson saw much success this weekend scoring three of the five goals on Saturday night. 

Following the week off, UTEP will host the East Texas Baptist Tigers, November 16-17. This will be the third meeting between both teams but the first time since the ETBU have officially become apart of TCHC.

Join the Miners for their first Science on Ice game of the season against ETBU, puck drop is slated for 11:00am and game two will be played Saturday afternoon at 3:30pm. Tickets are still available for both games and can be purchased by visiting

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