Historic win at North Iowa caps off wild week for WarHawks

The Warhawks began the week with a trip to New Ulm on Wednesday night. Willmar continued their winning ways with an 8-1 victory. After a scoreless first period, Jonah Jangula opened the scoring a minute and a half into the second. Ben Johnson and Michael Sweetland assisted on Jangula’s third of the year. Dylan Gajewski added two more for a 3-1 lead after two.

Willmar poured in five more goals in the third to cruise to victory. The Warhawks displayed a balance of scoring in the third with goals from Jeremiah Konkel, Gavin Uckele, Isaiah Thomas, Jack Willis, and Cole Wigestrand. Hunter Bjorge and Isaiah had multi-point nights, and Cooper Olson stopped 29 of 30 for the victory in net.

Saturday night they hosted Granite City, and it was the Lumberjacks skating away with a 5-3 victory. Another scoreless first period gave way to Willmar coming out and scoring a minute and a half into the second period. Alex Kupka scored his seventh of the season on the powerplay with assists from Gavin Uckele and Dylan Gajewski. Lewis Rowan scored another power-play goal late in the period for a 2-1 lead after two periods.

Granite City came out firing in the third scoring four goals in the first seven minutes. Rowan added his second of the game and seventh of the season late in regulation but it wasn’t enough as Granite City snapped the Warhawks home winning streak at five.

Sunday night saw Willmar travel to North Iowa and come away with a thrilling 3-2 win in overtime. Dylan Gajewski tied the game 1-1 with his fourth of the season midway through the second period. Gavin Uckele and Isaiah Thomas picked up the assists.

Trailing 2-1 with just under 6 minutes to go, Alex Kupka came through with the equalizer on assists from Lewis Rowan and Isaiah Thomas. Then in OT Kupka gave the Warhawks their first victory against the Bulls with his ninth of the year with assists from Hunter Bjorge and Cole Wigestrand. Will Pinney made 35 saves for the victory in net.

Willmar (13-11-0-0; 26 points) is alone in second place in the West Division. They host North Iowa on Friday and Granite City on Saturday. The puck drops both nights at 7:10 pm. Tickets are available at tickets.willmarwarhawks.com or catch the action on HockeyTV.