SECTION GIRLS HOCKEY: Leaving it all on the ice
Tigers come back in third period, fall just short to Mankato West in second straight double OT game
MARSHALL – For the second time in less than 24 hours, the Marshall girls hockey team found itself in a win-or-go-home double-overtime thriller in the Section 3A tournament. Unfortunately, this time around it was their opponent in No. 3-seeded Mankato West that broke the deadlock, as the Scarlets punched their ticket to the section championship with a 3-2 victory.
Though it wasn’t the outcome that they had hoped for, Tigers coach Cassi Weiss couldn’t be more proud of her team and the growth that they’ve shown throughout the season.
“I’m really proud of them,” said Weiss. “Over the whole season it’s been so fun to watch them grow and it just showed in that third period how much determination and grit and aggressiveness they have.”
As they’ve done all season long, the Tigers left it all on the ice and showed a great deal of resiliency to force overtime after beginning the third period down a pair of goals. For Weiss, the never-say-die attitude exhibited by the group to battle back was a trend that lasted throughout the year.
“There’s been so many games this year that we’ve come back from a deficit and it was just another one of those,” said Weiss. “Unfortunately, the overtime didn’t end like we would like, but they dug deep and they left it all on the ice. That’s all we can ask from them.”
When the puck dropped for the opening period it was the visiting Scarlets that dictated the pace of play and controlled the puck for a majority of the 17 minutes of action – racking up 12 shots on goal and two tallies in the process to take a 2-0 lead into the first intermission.
According to Weiss, the effort was there but attention to detail in winning the little battles was lacking. With some adjustments, the Tigers ramped things up considerably in the second period.
“We gave the effort in that first period but we weren’t doing the little things,” said Weiss. “We weren’t catching pucks, we weren’t getting pucks to the net and we knew that if we want to win a game we have to score goals. So that was the main focus of our talk after the first. We can’t win a game with three shots on net in a period so they went out and they dominated that second even though we didn’t score. Their goalie had a lot of great saves and unfortunately it just didn’t go our way, but they definitely came out in the second and that’s what we needed.”
With an extra spring in their step in the second period, the Tigers gave the Scarlets all that they could handle with a relentless forecheck that generated 14 shots on net. Rising to the challenge, Mankato West’s netminder turned all of them aside to maintain the two-goal lead into the third period.
The score would remain 2-0 all the way to the eight-minute mark of the third period before Friday night’s overtime hero Logan Sherman once again came up big for the Tigers with a clutch goal to cut the deficit to within one. Less than three minutes later, captain Sydney Mauch buried the game-tying goal on a shorthanded breakaway.
After knocking on the door multiple times before finally breaking through, Mauch was determined to find the back of the net when the puck bounced her way.
“I just knew that we were down by a goal and we had to get another one,” said Mauch. “The puck kept bouncing my way, so I just kept moving and then I really didn’t see when I shot but I just shot it at the net and it went in.”
With neither team able to add a third goal before the end of regulation, the first of two overtime periods got underway. Less than a minute in, the Tigers were forced to go on the penalty kill where goaltender Emma Klenken continued to stand tall in net to weather the storm and keep her team in the game. She would go on to finish the contest with 50 saves on 53 shots in what Weiss described as a great game for the sophomore.
“She had a great game,” said Weiss. “She definitely kept us in it in the third on a couple of those chances, and on that first power play she got real lucky on the pipe but the rest of them weren’t luck, that was straight skill. We’re lucky to have her.”
After a scoreless first overtime, the Scarlets got another chance on the power play in the second overtime and this time made the most of the opportunity as McKenna Krosch found the back of the net with a sea of red sweaters providing a screen – sending Mankato West to the section championship with a 3-2 win.
With the final game of the season in the books, the Tigers end their 2018-2019 campaign with an overall record of 17-7-3. Reflecting on the season, senior captain Olivia Peterson was disappointed with how it ended but is proud of all the work that the team has put in to get to this point.
“We know it was a great season,” said Peterson. “We worked so hard for everything that we’ve done, and we’ve just put in a lot of work in practice and throughout the games. We know that we deserve to be in that section championship game, but they had a great game too as well.”
Mankato West 3, Marshall 2 (2 OT)
Mankato West 2 0 0 0 1 – 3
Marshall 0 0 2 0 0 – 2
Mankato West: Palesotti, 8:32 (power play) (Langworthy, Krosch).
Mankato West: Hays, 3:36 (Wieland)
Marshall: Peterson, 11:02 (High-sticking, 2 min).
Mankato West: Hays, 11:02 (High-sticking, 2 min).
Marshall: Sherman, 9:46 (Body Check, 2 min).
Marshall: Sherman, 9:06 (unassisted).
Marshall: Mauch, 6:41 (short-handed) (Sherman)
Mankato West: Jackson, 13:31 (Interference, 2 min).
Marshall: Penske, 8:30 (Interference, 2 min).
Mankato West: Hays, 2:01 (Tripping, 2 min).
Marshall: Mauch, 7:23 (Hooking, 2 min).
Mankato West: Krosch, 8:09 (power play) (Wieland, Langworthy)
Mankato West: Krosch, 12:36 (Body Check, 2 min).
Marshall: Schaefer, 9:22 (Interference, 2 min).
SHOTS ON GOAL: Mankato West 53;
SAVES: Marshall 50; Mankato West 39.