NEGAUNEE - Goaltender Tyler Riutta did his best, but he couldn't keep the Negaunee High School hockey team from opening the home portion of its schedule with a loss Monday night.
Riutta made 63 saves - 31 in the third period - in the Miners' 5-1 loss to Houghton at the Negaunee Ice Arena.
"He was unbelievable," NHS first-year head coach Darrell Sleeman said. "He kept us in the game."
Raymond Brice scored three goals and Connor Hannon two for the Gremlins (3-0), who led 4-1 after the first period. Jonathan Bostwick added three assists.
Michael Farley notched the lone goal for Negaunee (1-2), a power play marker that tied the score 1-1. Jackson Vilona and Ryan Ely recorded assists.
"We played hard, but struggled in the defensive zone due mainly to Houghton's skating and puck movement," Sleeman said.
"But we didn't quit. We kept battling. We just have to work on puck control and getting shots on net."