By Steve Meyer
It was shaking up to be a similar story to most of the 2019-2020 campaign for the Vikings White. Half way through the second period and they had given up yet another goal to go down 3 to 1 to Eisberg in Wiesloch. They were down, but they were not out. The Vikings looked each other in the eyes and subtly nodded. There would not be another loss. Not on this night. What followed was a furious attack, coupled along with a smothering defense and wizardry between the pipes by Bjorn Beggert, which led to Jannik Paluschtzik’s scoring his second goal of the night at 11:00 (assist Joshua Braman) after some nifty dangles. But with bodies banging it was inevitable that someone would end up in the penalty box, and so Chris Scheumann, along with his mustache, ended up getting 2 minutes for holding at 12:53. At this point it should have been the Vikings with their backs to the wall, struggling to hold on. But thanks to a raindrop flipper from Dan Donovan to Jannik Paluschtzik that resulted in a breakaway shorthanded goal it was tied at 3 at the end of 2 periods of play (note: This is Palu’s first hat trick of the season).
With the momentum feeding the Vikings to start the third period Paluschtzik would score again, his fourth of the game, at 0:45 (assists Olli Fritz and Dan Donovan) thanks to some beautiful passing and stick work in front of the net. Not yet beaten Eisberg answered back with a quick one timer off of a faceoff in the Vikings zone to tie the game back at 4 at 4:14. At this point, despite only having 2 lines to Eisberg’s 4, the Vikings would begin relentlessly wearing them down. A near constant attack, getting pucks deep, cycling, skating, and getting pucks on net was clearly taking its toll and resulted in Christoph Wilhelmy getting his first goal of the year at 8:05. Moments later Paluschtzik netted his fifth of the game at 8:35 (assist Olli Fritz) after a battle in front of the crease to make the score 6 to 4. Everyone in the ice halle could feel it at that point. Eisberg was exhausted and able to mount only ineffective attacks which were quickly turned away by the Viking’s defense and net minder. A last second goal by Eisberg at 14:45 would not make a difference as the Vikings White completed the improbably come from behind victory for their first win of the season.
Another special thanks to Jason Malak for making the trip down to Wiesloch to coach, help keep everyone focused, and help keep everyone level. And due to his performance Jannik Paluschtzik has been given the nickname Funf in recognition of his first 5 goal game of his DPL career.