EAST ALTON — The Alton Redbirds cruised past the Granite City Warriors in Thursday night’s Mississippi Valley Club Hockey Association contest at East Alton Ice Rink.
The Redbirds trounced the Warriors 10-2. Alton’s Joe Boevingloh turned in a hat trick, scoring Alton’s first goal at the 11:33 mark in the first period and scoring his second and third goals within a minute of each other at the 3:41 and 2:41 marks in the third period.
In the third period goals, he fired off the first shot near the hash marks and the second one was just feet from the goal. This marks the second hat trick of his career, his first came last year.
“I had some really good passes,” Boevingloh said. “Especially Conner Jones, he had the assist on every one of my goals.”
Alton coach Abram Henson talked about Boevingloh’s sense of placement.
“As far as Joe, he’s always where he needs to be,” he said. “He’s always right there on the net and he’s hard to move. He puts the puck away, it’s great. He had one goal on a breakaway and the other two were on rebounds. He’s there to get the garbage goals. He can put them away and that’s great.”
Granite City showed a little life after Boevingloh’s first goal made the score 1-0 in favor of Alton. Warrior Darian Glenn notched a goal at the 9:45 mark of the first quarter to tie it 1-1. But the short burst of momentum wouldn’t last, as Logan Rushing (6:17) and Brandon Lang (4:03) scored goals in the first period to give the Redbirds a 3-1 advantage at the end of the first period. Alton put 19 shots on goal in the first period while Granite City placed just four.
“We just had a tough night,” Granite City coach Frank Parker said. “We had some kids that we’re playing ill, just getting over the flu. We got some kids that were banged up a little. I’m not making excuses, but it was a tough night. We’re missing one of our best scorers (Pavol Hutchins), he’s got a broken collar bone. We’re doing the best with what we have to work with.”
Hutchins was injured three weeks ago. The Redbirds (7-5) momentum continued unabated in the second period. Simon Bryce scored two goals early in the period — the first at the 12:41 mark and the second at the 12:33 mark. Conner Jones’ goal at the 12:20 mark gave Alton a 6-1 lead and Scotty Waldrup’s goal at the 3:53 mark made the score 7-1.
Brenden Colvin scored Granite City’s final goal with 1:13 left to play in the second period, cutting it to 7-2.
“We came out really strong in the first and then closed it out in the third,” Alton coach Abram Henson said. “It was one of those games.”
Parker said his team “played soft in the defensive zone.”
He added, “There wasn’t a lot of physicality in our game. We played out of synch the whole night. Once they went up 4-1, it’s almost like we slipped off of the pavement.”
Henson felt his team took full advantage of second chance goals.
“It looked like they had a younger set of D (defense) out there,” he said. “And they’re short benched like we are, about 12 kids and that’s hard. I think their JV team is dominating. In a few years they’ll be just fine.”
Alton put up 34 shots on goal in the contest while Granite City had just 14. Tanner St. Peters netted the Redbird’s final goal 38 seconds before the end of the game.