By Greg Gielczyk

SCOTTVILLE — Despite their recurring problem with penalties, especially in the second period, the Lakeshore Badgers co-op ice hockey team skated to their first win of the season Wednesday night, beating East Kentwood, 5-2 at West Shore Community Ice Arena in Scottville.

After a scoreless first period, the Badgers scored two quick goals early in the second period just 48 seconds apart to take a 2-0 lead, and kept the lead the rest of the way.

“We had lots of other opportunities to score as well, so that’s good,” Badgers head coach Bill Shriver said. “When you play five-on-five, as I tell the players, we can play.

“Like I tell the players, we play five-on-five, we can play. This was a good like team, and hopefully we’re going to see a lot of teams like this skill-wise.

“If they can keep their heads, we can play. We got through that stretch where we had six penalties in the second period, which was good.”

The Badgers had only two penalties in the third period, and both of them came late and did not result in any damage.

Lakeshore broke the scoring drought with 11:59 left in the second period when Mason County Central senior Russell Schade buried a hard shot from the right wing. Mason County Central junior Austin Quillan and Ludington senior Luke Larr had the helpers as the Badgers took a 1-0 lead.

Lakeshore extended its lead to 2-0 at the 15:11 mark as Ludington freshman JT Szoboslay stormed in from the right side and zipped the puck past the keeper on an assist from Quillan.

Penalties crept into the game after that, but the Badgers managed to kill off several power plays and eventually found the back of the net again to make it a 3-0 game with 2:33 left before the second intermission.

Mason County Central freshman Brandon Austin did the honors, juking out the keeper, making him lunge to his right and zipping a shot overĀ  past his vane attempt to get a glove on the puck for an unassisted goal.

East Kentwood finally made the Badgers pay for a penalty with a power play goal from Dylan Locey with just 1:09 to play in the second, cutting Lakeshore’s lead to 3-1. Cam Willie and Oscar Vargas were credited with the assists.

The Falcons trimmed the Badgers lead to just one, 3-2 with an unassisted even strength goal from Vargas at the 11:08 mark of the final period.

But the Badgers responded, answering with a power play goal by Larr with 9:46 to play in regulation from Schade, and Quillan added an empty net goal with 1:18 left to close out the scoring.

“We had five goals and five different scorers, and we had three different players on assists,” Shriver said. “And again, we had really good opportunities.

“I’m going to say the shots were pretty even. Alex played well for us in net, obviously, gave us a chance. The one goal he misplayed the puck, that was kind of on him. The other was just a good goal.

“Everybody up and down the net played well. Everybody contributed. We’re going in the right direction.”

Lakeshore has a two-game home series with Lenawee starting with a 7 p.m. game Friday night, and then play a 3 p.m. game Saturday.