As if the emotions of an adolescent aren’t enough of a mixed bag, toss in high-pressured athletics and it can be a bit of a train wreck.
Breck goaltender Jack Kenny felt the business end of it a week ago. The senior was pulled in the third period of the Class 1A, Section 2 championship game after allowing five goals on 17 shots in an eventual overtime victory for the Mustangs.
Given a chance at redemption Wednesday, Kenny stopped all 18 shots Duluth Marshall threw at him in the state quarterfinals, preserving a 7-0 shutout for the tournament’s No. 3 seed.
“It feels pretty good to bounce back,” said Kenny, who upped his record to 19-3-1. “The goalie coach just told me to relax and just play and everything will take care of itself. And I think that went for the team today, too. A lot of the guys just took it easy.”
Well, for the most part. Kenny admitted he was nervous to start. “I don’t know if you saw, but I took a spill like 30 seconds into the game,” he said, drawing a muffled snicker from nearby teammates.“Luckily, the puck was in their zone. After that I settled in and played pretty well.”
Especially in the second period, when he denied a pair of scoring chances by the Hilltoppers just outside of the goal mouth.
“He’s our guy, we’re sticking with him,” Breck coach Les Larson said. “We love him. We’re not trading him. There’s a little bit of a blip on the screen that is ancient history.”
Six Mustangs’ players accounted for the scoring, with Matt Colford netting a pair of goals.