DUBUQUE, Iowa — It didn’t take long for the Teddy Bear Toss Night festivities to start. Just under five minutes into the first period, Cole Guttman scored his first of two goals on the night, leading the Dubuque Fighting Saints to a 4-1 win over the Green Bay Gamblers on Saturday night at the Mystique Community Ice Center.
In the process, the Saints swept the weekend, and have won five consecutive games, and eight of the last nine, with standings points in all nine games.
It was domination from start to finish, as the Fighting Saints not only outshot Green Bay in all three periods, and for the game 34-18, but they outscored the Gamblers in the second and third periods 3-0.
Guttman scored at 4:21 of the first period, on a nifty passing play between Dallas Gerads and Makai Holdener entering the offensive zone on the power play. The St. Cloud State commit worked towards the far post, and deposited the puck past Green Bay goaltender David Hrenak. Over a thousand bears cascaded onto the ice following the goal, all to benefit Toys For Tots.
He eventually scored the game-winning goal just over three minutes into the second period on a centering pass from Zach Solow, who extended his point streak to 13 games with the primary assist. It harkened back to Gordie Green’s Teddy Bear Toss Night hat trick from a season ago, but it was not meant to be on this night.
Colin Theisen and Holdener scored in the third period to salt the game away for the Saints, who only had to contend with a first-period power play goal from Matt Berkovitz, which tied the game. Holdener’s tally went into the empty net to make it 4-1 late in the third.
Jaxon Castor continued his banner season for Dubuque with win number 12 on the year, and in the process, his goals-against average continued to plummet to a minuscule 1.89. Hrenak was forced to make 30 saves on the night in his second game in a row.
While it was chippy at times, with 54 penalty minutes dished out combined, both teams were only able to capitalize on one power play opportunity each.
The Fighting Saints take to the road for both games next weekend, with a stop at the Ice Box in Lincoln to take on the Stars on Friday, December 9 at 7:35 p.m. and then to Dupaco Cowbell Cup rival Waterloo on Saturday, December 10 at 7:05 p.m. Catch all of the action on Dubuque’s Super Hits 106.1 FM, or on the USHL’s streaming video provider, HockeyTV.