Welcome back Wilderness Nation! Another week is in the books as the High School Hockey season rolls on. Everyone seems to be headed one way or another, but it’s just the start and there is plenty of time to turn it around.
Starting on Saturday we had a ton of games to choose from. First off I’d like to apologize to the Luverne team as it looks like I jinxed them in my last article as they ran into their first loss the next day. Luverne was dropped by St. Paul Academy 5-2. Luverne’s Chaz Smedsrud scored both of their goals, but when you are only able to put 13 shots on goal, it is going to be tough to pull out a victory on the road. To St. Paul Academy’s credit, they really brought it to Luverne and put almost half of their shots on goal in the 3rd, blowing the game out of the water. The next game on the docket was Warroad visiting Grand Rapids. Warroad took a 3-1 lead going into the 3rd. Grand Rapids fought hard to come back but was only able to notch one more marker to lose the game at home 3-2. Continuing with teams who pulled off a win on the road, Eden Prarie went into Farmington and shut out the home team 3-0. Despite a very tightly contested first period, Eden Prarie was able to net two in the second and control play in the 3rd in a very defensive period, scoring one goal and taking the win. Following that game we had those Cadets from St. Thomas Academy grab the most one sided game of the night, an 11-4 domination over the home town Academy of Holy Angels. St. Thomas Academy put an amazing 24 shots on goal, five of those finding the back of the net. STA eventually tallied a total of 53 shots on net, and holding Holy Angels to just 3 shots in the 3rd as they were completely out of the game. Edina, however, continued to be Edina, giving Rosemount no chance, defending their home ice and taking the victory 5-1. Dylan Malmquist led all scorers with a goal and two assists. Our last game of the night brings us back to Hermantown Arena. The formerly unstoppable Hawks are limping out of the gate this season. Having already dropped one game, they lose again in this game 2-1. In a very defensive game, both teams managed to score a goal each in the second but that was about it for offense. This game needed overtime where Nathan Nelsen of Hopkins was able to score the winner on the power play.
The next few days were a bit slower compared to these last few days so we will just right into Tuesday where things got a little more interesting again. We start with the struggling Hibbing/Chisholm team traveling to Hill-Murray. As expected Hill-Murray really controlled this game from start to finish, winning handily 4-1. Taking a 3-0 lead into the third Hibbing/Chisholm did nothing to get back into the game and make it a contest. They managed just ONE shot the entire period. Yes that one shot made it in the back of the net but that’s not the way you make it back into a game. Hill-Murray ended up winning 4-1. Lakeville North continued their domination this week, once again taking care of business on home ice, throttling Apple Valley 7-0. That included a 4 goal 3rd period and an amazing 62 shots for the game. Finally we got to Luverne, how would they handle the first loss of the season? Could they rebound and look like the team before that. The answer was a resounding yes as they destroyed Fairmont at home 14-1. The duo of Jaxon Nelson and Chaz Smedsrud both tallied 4 points, but the real star of the game was Luverve’s Kasyn Kruse who not only had a hat trick this game but also tallied 4 assists. The buzz saw that is Luverne is back, putting a whopping 73 shots on net while only allowing 10 the entire game.
Thursday brought us a few games of note, such as Lakeville North once again defending home ice and beating the Burnsville Blaze 4-1. The key here was the play of the Poehlings. All three of them managed two points in the game as Jack, Ryan and Nick lead Lakeville North to the convincing victory. Next we had the Duluth East Greyhounds picking up their first win of the year, with a 3-1 win over Cloquet-Esko-Carlton. They Greyhounds played well in this contest but they had better play better and quickly if they want any chance to get back to state with their less than impressive 1-1-2 record. Lastly, we had St. Thomas Academy doing whatever they wanted to a clearly over matched Hastings team. STA managed 9 goals on 50 shots, just completely overpowering Hastings at every turn. They even had the penalty kill working as they potted two shorthanded goals in the game.
Well that’s a wrap for this week Wilderness Nation. We have another exciting week of high school hockey next week so stay tuned to see who makes some moves up and who keeps tumbling down the rankings.