Wesley Berg sets Denver's points, goals records in win against St. John's
QUEENS, N.Y. -- Tewaaraton Watch List member Wesley Berg broke Denver's career points (217) and goals (158) records, leading the No. 5 Pioneers to an 18-5 win against St. John's on Saturday afternoon at Da Silva Memorial Field.
"It really was a good team win," head coach Bill Tierney said. "We always talk about team and team and team, but today I have to mention Wes Berg breaking the all-time points and goals records today. That is quite an accomplishment, especially knowing you have people like Mark Matthews to pass. I know Wes would be the first one to tell you that it's about his teammates, and it really is, but he's been our leader, and I'm really proud of him, and how he conducts himself."
Connor Cannizzaro had a game-high six points on three goals and three assists. The hat trick was his team-leading seventh of the season. Zach Miller had four points on two goals and two helpers of his own. Jack Bobzien and Colin Woolford also scored a pair of goals in the winning effort.
Berg opened the first quarter with his 25th goal of the season off a beautiful feed around the cage from Cannizzaro. The Maryland transfer scored a goal of his own 12 seconds later to double Denver's advantage. Bobzien answered a St. John's goal with his 11th of the campaign to round out the first-quarter scoring.
The reigning USILA National Player of the Week started the scoring in the second quarter as well, netting three of Denver's first four goals in the quarter, including both record-breaking goals. Woolford added a pair of goals in the quarter as well, to go along with one from Miller, Cannizzaro and Bobzien. The Pioneers outscored St. John's 8-2 in the second quarter to take an 11-3 lead into the locker room.
"I didn't know until Bobz [Jack Bobzien] told me at halftime," Berg said. "It's always a nice accomplishment to be able to do something like that. It means a lot to me [that Mark Matthews reached out]. I've played with him since I was really young. I won my first Minto Cup with him, and we won a World Championship together."
Matthews was one of the first people to congratulate Berg on Twitter.
"That's when you know you have something special going on," Tierney said. "When the guy that just had his record broken will reach out to the one who just broke his record, that tells you something about what we have here. Mark is a special young man, and there will never be the likes of him, the way he played. Combine where we hope we are going, and where we have been in the last five years, and throw that together with love the Canadian teammates have for one another, it's a special feeling for our entire program."