The Wildcats, a co-op with Cedar Springs and Coopersville, came out with a 4-1 win over the Kenowa Hills-Fruitport-Fremont co-op squad.
The contest was also the first-ever Military, First Responder, Emergency Personnel Appreciation Game.
“We had a great turnout,” said Kenowa Hills head coach Matt Wiedenhoeft. “We had quite a few veterans and active-duty parents in attendance and were even blessed with a World War II veteran at the game.”
Guests were honored before the game for a special ceremony on the ice with each veteran joining a player to be cognized for their accomplishments.
“This was a privilege for our team, and we plan to make this an annual event,” added Wiedenhoeft. “We intended for our team president and treasurer and Walker Police Officer Tom Raisanen to drop the ceremonial puck, but he received an emergency call right before game time. Tom and our military and first responder guests all have the respect and appreciation of our entire team and the community.”
The game went scoreless after one period, with West Catholic scoring two goals in the second period to take a 2-0 lead into the third period. The final period saw two more West Catholic goals, with Kenowa’s sole goal scored at 5:29 by Mathieu Hannahs, assisted by Logan Granger and Jared Raisanen.
“We worked hard to outshoot them and played well despite the outcome,” said Wiedenhoeft.
The loss drops the Knights to 6-14 overall and 0-9 in the Fischer Division. The squad will host Lowell-Caledonia on Wednesday at 7 p.m., followed by a road trip to Hudsonville on Friday at 8 p.m. to wrap up the regular season.