By Ryan Divish/Havre Daily News Sports Editoremail@example.com
The Havre Ice Hawk squirt hockey team wasn't perfect last weekend in Great Falls, but it was close.
The Ice Hawks capped off a stellar three days on March 14 with the ultimate prize, a state squirt hockey championship.
Havre defeated regular-season leader and rival Great Falls 5-2 to take home the title.
Great Falls grabbed a quick 1-0 lead on a goal by Robert Hubka. But Havre answered minutes later on a goal from Justin Jensen with an assist from Brandt Miller.
Havre took a 2-1 lead in the second period as Miller found Chase Rolf for a score at the 9:32 mark.
Great Falls tied the game at 2-2 later in the second period on an unassisted goal from Dylan Barton.
But the Ice Hawks would take the lead for good in the third period as Miller scored the game-winner with an unassisted goal with 14:32 left in the game.
Havre added a pair of insurance goals later in the game as Danny Roe scored a pair of goals on assists from Miller and Jonathan Austin.
"We came out in that third period and really outskated then," said Ice Hawks head coach Jim Miller. "We really played hard and played together."
Joey DeVries had a solid game in goal for Havre, stopping 28 shots on goal.
To advance to the championship game, Havre was a perfect 3-0 in pool play and defeated Missoula in a cross-over game.
It wasn't easy. The Ice Hawks trailed Missoula with about seven minutes remaining in the third period, but took over and rallied for the win.
"We really played hard in that last seven minutes," Miller said. "The kids really competed and showed a lot of heart coming back."
Roe led the Ice Hawk attack with a hat trick. Brandt Miller scored two goals and dished out two assists, Chase Rolf added a goal and an assist and Austin chipped in with an assist. DeVries had 12 saves in the game.
Havre opened pool play with a 5-2 win over the Gallatin Valley Freeze.
Roe scored two goals and had two assists and Miller had a goal and three assists to pace Havre. Austin and Rolf added a goal each, while DeVries stopped 16 shots.
In their second pool-play game, the Ice Hawks scored a 4-2 win over the Bozeman Stingers.
Roe and Brandt Miller combined for three goals and four assists, while Nate Welch added a goal. DeVries had 22 saves in the win.
In their final game of pool play, the Ice Hawks shut out Billings 2-0.
Brandt Miller and Roe scored goals in the win and DeVries was solid in goal, picking up 18 saves.
For Jim Miller this was the perfect ending to a very good season.
"It took us a little time to gel because we had kids from last year's mites team and last year's squirts team," he said. "This team had some pressure on them because both the mites and squirts won state championships last year. Every kid was used to winning, but we just told them that if they left their heart out on the ice, it didn't matter what the scoreboard said and they did that this weekend."
Other team members included: Kolton Brough, Jaydon Conder, Jaclyn Evans, Brayden Grimson, Blaine Grisak, Ethan Hettinger, Crysta Robinson, Ali Sinclair, Levi Wavrick and Tim Welch.