The BYU hockey team lost a pair of games by one goal each over the weekend and is still looking for its first complete all-around game.
BYU faced Boise State on Thursday and showed great resiliency but was hurt by small, unforced errors. After falling down by two goals to the Broncos, the Cougars battled back to tie the game at 2 early in the second period. The Cougars then gave up two more goals to the Broncos falling behind 4-2. The Cougars refused to give in and yet again showed their fight, getting a goal off a laser shot from Cam Hymas just in front of the blue line.
The Cougars continued with their momentum in the third period getting off several scoring opportunities and forcing the Broncos into several penalties. However, the Cougars could never capitalize committing several untimely penalties of their own.
Caleb Thomas is an example of the Cougars’ fighting spirit, playing the last few minutes of the contest with a broken jaw. The Cougars still aren’t ready to give up hope even after the close loss.
“We played really hard that entire game and really came together as a team,” team captain Mitch Facer said. “I know we keep saying we’re heartened by close games, but the fact is we’re getting better and better.”
BYU repeated the performance against Santa Rosa Community College on Friday, dropping the game 5-4. After falling behind 5-1 the Cougars made a comeback in the final period.
“We played really well in the third period,” BYU Coach Jeremy Weiss said. “We had a few chances that we just barely missed, a few hit the crossbar.”
Facer pointed to the start of these games as to where he thinks the team can flip some of these close losses to wins.
“We need to come out harder,” Facer said. “We have a tendency to come out slow and lethargic, and if we got rid of goals scored in the first couple minutes of the period, we would have won those games.”
In addition to Thomas, Facer and David Gebert were lost to injury for the final game. The depleted BYU bench proved problematic against the Western Washington University game, in which penalties proved the difference. Western Washington scored five power-play goals against BYU in the second period. This time there was no bouncing back, and the Cougars lost 6-0.
“A lot of our team was out with injuries the third game, so that game didn’t really demonstrate our potential,” Facer said.
The Cougars will look to get healthy with the Utes coming to town Saturday.