Section 4AA Girls Hockey Semi-Finals

Posted: February 15, 2012 by Steve in Uncategorized

There were two hard fought games for the Section 4AA Girls Hockey finals. The teams expected to win, won, but not without a big fight from the losers. The results set up the expected final of Roseville (#5 in state) vs. Hill Murray (#1 in state) on Friday night at 8 at Aldrich Arena. Hill Murray has the state’s top scorer and Roseville has the state’s top goalie.

Roseville vs. White Bear Lake

Roseville looked out of sorts all night with no score after the first period and falling behind first in the second period. Five minutes after White Bear scored, Roseville evened the score on a goal by Kate Flug. Roseville outshot White Bear pretty thoroughly (I didn’t hear the counts but I think it was in the range of 25-12), but many pucks went through White Bear’s crease untouched. White Bear contested the puck everywhere and Roseville couldn’t seem to put three passes together. After the second period, the score was tied at 1-1 and the Roseville crowd was nervous. Half-way through the final period, Kate Flug scored again to give the Roseville crowd some breathing room. Flug then iced the game with about a minute left with a nifty empty net goal from a sharp angle.

Hill Murray vs. Stillwater

I only intended to stay for about one period so I could see the great Hannah Brandt, but Stillwater kept it interesting enough that I stayed for the whole game. Stillwater charged out of the gate and scored first after about 5 minutes. They controlled the tempo of the first half of the period until Hill Murray got their bearings. It wasn’t long after that that Hannah Brandt fed another player the puck five feet from the goal that led to Hill Murray’s first goal. Not long after that, Brandt scored herself on a semi-breakaway with a shot from about 20 feet out into the top left corner. At that point, I thought the rout was on, but Stillwater scored again with about 2 minutes left in the period.

The second period was close fought with Stillwater getting good chances, but Hill Murray had Hannah Brandt. She scored part way through the period on a short handed goal. It was 3-2 after two. The third period was closely fought as well, but again Brandt scored on another shot from 20 feet out, this time just under the cross-bar in the middle of the net. Stillwater fought hard right to end, but just couldn’t put the puck in. Finally, Hill Murray got an empty netter with 4 seconds left.

The Section Final

It will be hard to stop Hannah Brandt in the section final. Last year she scored three goals to beat Roseville 4-2 and I am not sure I see anything different happening this year. For Roseville to win, it is going to have to score more than 2 goals. I would suggest that they put either Leigh Stechlein or Slattery on Brandt at all times and make the others beat them. For Roseville, may be their last chance for glory for a while as 11 of their players are graduating this year. Hill Murray on the hand has three 8th graders and three 9th graders on their roster! Sounds like a juggernaut in the making.

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