Special thanks to Jeff Sauer for the outstanding summary of all these games!!
The Championship upset
The Championship game for the Waupun Holiday classic was between undefeated and number 10 ranked Marquette vs 3-8 DePere. Pretty easy to predict a winner right? Well this is why they play the game.
Marquette and DePere skated back forth from Zone to Zone throughout the first period. Marquette out shot the Voyagers 7 - 4. Marquette a great chance in the first to break the ice as Charles Langenfeld drove to the net from the right side of the ice only to have DePere goalie Brody Van Den Heuvel stretched out as far as he could and gloved it right out of the air. Both teams had several power plays but each goalie, Zach Schmidt for Marquette and Van Den Heuvel, fought off each opportunity.
In the second period, once again both teams had chances to break the drought. Both teams cleaned up their play earning only one power play each. Both offenses stepped up their attacks shooting twice as many shots as the first period. However, neither goalie let one passed to keep the game scoreless after 2. Everyone except the Voyager fans was surprised to see a 0 - 0 game after 2 periods.
You could feel the tension as both teams hit the ice for the third period. No one wanted to make a mistake or take a penalty. Then with 11:45 left in the 3rd period Josh Brud found himself open just inside the Blue line just feet from the faceoff dot, when he fired it toward the net. At the same time Murphy Eggers was breaking toward the net and was able to get is stick on the puck which tipped the puck into the air over the shoulder of Marquette goalie Zach Schmidt. The Waupun Community Center erupted with cheers from he DePere fans and surprised gasps from Marquette. DePere 1 Marquette 0.
Now the game was on.
Marquette poured it on for the rest of the period while DePere went into protect mode. Van Den Heuvel and the DePere defense turned back attack after attack occasionally mounting a mini attack of their own. However, Marquette was dominated possession. At 10:59 in the third, Marquette went on the power play. DePere turned away 3 good opportunities by Marquette to score. Less than thirty seconds after killing off the penalty, DePere was called for another penalty which occurred do to a huge size difference between the forward and the defensemen.
With 3:25 left in the game, DePere takes a time out to settle down the team which felt the penalty was unjustified. Marquette came out of the time out very aggressive. For 2 minutes, the Hilltoppers tried to set up a shot to put passed Van Den Heuvel with no success as the the goalie and his defense stayed strong. DePere successfully killed off the penalty. A whistle blew at 1:10 left in the game and everyone held their breath to see the call: offsides!
Marquette took their time out and pulled Schmidt with the face off taking placing in the neutral zone closest to the DePere blue line. Marquette won the face off and pressed hard with no avail. DePere was the Waupun Holiday Classic Champion and the first team to hand Marquette a loss!
Coach Coppo said “This team has been up and down all season. Mainly down. I made a few personnel changes and it really has made a difference. The team believes they can win and this just shows we can do it. It was a great game and Marquette is a solid team. We are just happy to have competed and won!"