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SLUH's offense keeps rolling in big win over Chaminade

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AFFTON – With the end of the regular season just a week away, the St. Louis U. High hockey team has found its offense at just the right time.

The Junior Billikens, heading into their game Friday against Chaminade, had averaged just over five goals a game in their last six contests.

SLUH improved on that total with a 6-0 win over Chaminade in a Mid-States Club Hockey Association Municipal Conference game at the Affton Ice Rink.

“They learned the hard way, and we weren't having success with it and we got rid of individual play and now you've got linemates supporting each other on defense, moving the puck up, getting rid of the puck when we have pressure and nothing going on,” SLUH coach Steve Walters said. “And then more than that, just playing tough hockey going into the net.”

Kai Duncan had a goal and an assist for SLUH (10-4-4). Luke Gund, Daniel Sendobry, Logan Petlansky, Hank Fusco and James Eisenbeis also scored.

SLUH goalie Maksim Bely made 14 saves to earn his fourth shutout of the season, with two of them coming at Chaminade’s expense.

“There's some of my (club) teammates playing on other teams, so that kind of brings up the competition,” Bely said. “I was just in the game today and during the first one as well. I’ve just been doing what I always do, and it's worked out for me.”

Patrick Struckhoff and Julius Kolari combined for 28 saves for Chaminade (4-12-2).

Gund’s power play goal, a slap shot from the right point, gave SLUH the lead six minutes into the game.

Sendobry made it 2-0 SLUH with 26 seconds left in the first period by capitalizing on a miscue between Struckhoff and his defenseman which left the puck sitting in front of an open net. Sendobry chipped it in for his eighth goal of the season.

“It was a team effort,” Sendobry said. “They kind of took it to us for the first few minutes and in the first we started to settle in and figure it out. And that goal going into the second really bumped us in there and then we just kept working and working and the goals came.”

SLUH built off the momentum of the late goal by outshooting the Red Devils 20-3 and outscoring them 4-0 in the second period, effectively putting the game away.

Petlansky added to the Jr. Billikens lead with an unassisted breakaway goal early in the second period. The puck appeared to roll off Petlansky’s stick as he made his move, but he was able to corral it and whip it in at a sharp angle.

Duncan finished a 3-on-1 break by roofing a nifty backhander to give SLUH a 4-0 lead at the 5 minute, 29 second mark of the second.

“Everyone's getting more comfortable as the year goes on,” Sendobry said. “We’ve just become better friends, so everyone's just clicking. And we just take that to the ice and it's worked.”

Fusco and Eisenbeis added a couple more goals late to cap a dominant middle frame for the Jr. Billikens.

Bely wasn’t tested often, but was up to the challenge when he was, including a pair of tough saves early in the third period.

“That's the kind of the thing everybody overlooks, just because you don't get a lot of shots, they think it's easy, but you've really got to stay in the game,” Bely said. “I just try to keep mentally focused on the game. Just thinking about what they're doing and what ways I can help by playing the puck.”

Walters hopes to keep the momentum rolling into the postseason.

“We already said to our team before the game, we're in the postseason, where we're playing like we're in the postseason,” Walters said.

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