A matchup that has been brewing since February 2020 between the Colonels and the Monarchs finally happened on Friday as Wilkes took charge and beat King’s 5-4.
Historically, Wilkes has taken King’s to the house, beating them consecutively since the Colonel program started in 2018.
“This rivalry is for real and we knew we were going to face a better team and we definitely saw that right away,” said head coach Tyler Hynes.
Fans were loud, tensions were high and skates were ready to hit the ice. Both teams were ready to claim the title of the “Barre.”
In the first period, Wilkes did not let King’s interfere with their title of “Wilkes-Barre” as they started off with a goal from senior forward Tyler Dill at the 8:02 mark.
“Some nights the puck just finds a way to go in the net and it always feels good when it does,” said Dill.
There were multiple faceoffs in the first period, mostly won by Wilkes as the faceoff team was trying to get every opportunity to get the puck in the net.
The Monarchs remained scoreless in the first due to seven saves by junior goaltender Michael Paterson-Jones. The Colonel’s defense was able to back Paterson-Jones up.
King’s was able to put a mark on the scoreboard within a minute into the second period as they capitalized on a power play. Jakub Viedemann scored a goal of his own, and moments later senior defender Scott Mueller put one in the net assisted by senior forwards Nick Fea and Donald Flynn.
“We like to play fast and strong,” said Mueller. “It always feels great to contribute in any way possible and Nick
Fea made a great play to me in the middle of the zone for a goal.”
Dill followed Mueller’s score with a goal of his own at the 7:45 mark of the period with an assist by graduate student Taylor Brierley.
Three minutes later, Dill got a sharp pass from senior defender Dylan Kuipers for another goal for the Colonels. The Monarchs answered with a goal by Tyler Blanchard to end the second period with a score of 4-2.
The third period consisted of a goal by junior forward Nick Godfrey, assisted by Fea and Tyson Araujo.
“Our mindset was just to play our brand of hockey,” said Godfrey. “It was a huge relief to be quite honest. Any way that I can help the team and contribute as much as possible is always a great feeling.”
Wilkes’ defense let up two goals to King’s in the third, making the score 5-4. The sudden tight score of the game was unnerving for Hynes as he needed to lead his team to a win and for the title of the “Barre.”
“We were trying to hold on,” said Hynes. “King’s took it to us in the third and we just did not have any response.”
Wilkes was able to hold out and gain the 5-4 win due to early scores by Dill, Mueller, and Godfrey.
“Dill was really good,” said Hynes. “Big players play big in big games and he seemed like the only big guy that we had going. We are going to have to be better if we want to win another game against King’s because that is a team that is hungry and getting better.”
The next Colonel matchup will be on Nov. 14 as Wilkes will travel to Albertus Magnus College. The battle of the “Barre” rivalry will continue as Wilkes will host King’s College on Jan. 28.