The Brookfield Stars boys hockey team dropped two games over the weekend, losing to Bay Port, 5-0, on Friday at Ponds of Brookfield and to Homestead, 6-1, at the Ozaukee Ice Arena.
Bay Port scored twice in each of the first two periods and once in the third in a 5-0 loss to open the weekend.
"We were beat at every aspect of the game," assistant coach Matt Shapiro said. "They were bigger, faster and stronger and definitely wanted it more than our guys did.
"Our guys understand that this is how we will match up against most teams this season. We understand that our success will come from hard work. We let a decent Bay Port team come in to our own rink and we didn't put forth an acceptable team effort."
Then on Saturday against Homestead, the first period saw the teams exchange goals and then play a scoreless second period. But the Highlander exploded for five goals in the third period to win going away.
John Rymaszewski scored the Stars' goal with assists from Mason Kollakowski and Matt Stagl.
"Our intensity and focus was night and day compared to Friday night," Shapiro said. "Our guys showed up better prepared than we did the night before. We played much better in our defensive zone and increased our physical presence on the ice.
"The first two periods of this game was the best hockey we've played in our last three games. We fell short in the third period, and Homestead made a few nice plays to take us out of the game.
Goalie JJ Murnane had 65 saves over the week, 28 on Friday and 37 on Saturday.
"JJ is keeping us in games," Shapiro said. "He is facing a lot of shots and is giving our team a legitimate chance each game."
Shapiro sees some bright spots in the two defeats.
"Despite the outcome, our staff believes we made a lot of progress," he said. "We will take a lot of positives out of this game and will continue to stay focused on improving as a team."
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