LA CROSSE, WI – After falling behind, 2-0, the Bruins stormed back for a 5-3 win on Thursday night over the Coulee Region Chill at Green Island Ice Arena. Michael Piehler scored a pair of third period goals while Alex Schilling made 34 saves to earn the win, as the Bruins improved to 2-0-1 on the season over their out-of-division rivals.
The Bruins put 17 shots on Coulee’s netminder Todd Scott in the opening period, but trailed 1-0 on a Larry Jungwirth goal at 16:52. Jungwirth moved into the slot and slipped a backhander between the legs of Schilling for the only goal of the first.
At 11:08 of the 2nd, the Chill stretched their lead to 2-0 when Joey Sofo knocked a puck out of the air past Schilling, who had kicked out a shot from Ryan Carlson. It took only 13 seconds for the Bruins to respond as Logan Haskins set up Tanner DuFault in the slot, his fourth of the season making it a 2-1 score. After killing a penalty, the Bruins found the equalizer at 15:08, Liam Thrawl crashing the net to find the puck on the back door, set up by linemates Dante Zapata and John Wojciechowski. The Chill outshot the Bruins 22-6 in the period, but the game was tied heading to the 3rd.
Taylor Trapp took a penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct at the end of the 2nd, setting the stage for Michael Piehler’s go-ahead powerplay goal at 1:35 of the third. Travis Kothenbeutel sped up the wing and fed Piehler in the high slot for a hard wrister that beat Scott. Piehler struck again at 7:28, this time from the left wing circle, and the Bruins had four unanswered goals and a 4-2 lead. Simon Sagissor’s slap shot goal at 11:06 cut the lead back to one but Coulee would get no closer as Justin Misiak’s empty netter at 19:54 sealed the win.
The Bruins head home Friday to host the Brookings Blizzard in the first of a home-and-home at Riverside Arena, a 7:05 puck drop.