FAIRMONT - The Worthington Trojans boys hockey team captured its first win of the season, defeating the Fairmont Area Cardinals 7-2 on Thursday night at Martin County Arena.
Trojan senior captain Levi Leach scored two goals and assisted on three others to lead Worthington to victory.
Leach tallied his first point with an assist on a one-timer to Jacob Oberloh as a Trojan power play expired with three minutes and six seconds left in the opening period.
STICK SAVE — Fairmont Area goalkeeper Derrick Hohensee (right) makes a stick save off a chip from Worthington’s Alex Kremer (8) during nonconference hockey action Thursday night at Martin County Arena in Fairmont. Fairmont Area’s Greg Claeys (21) and Brock Johnson (22), along with Worthington’s Kody Honius (far left), watch the action. Photo by Leanna Becker
The Cardinals' Grant Becker had an opportunity to tie the game when he was awarded a penalty shot after being tripped driving towards the Worthington goal.
Trojans' netminder Rylan Scholtes turned away the penalty shot opportunity, to hold the one-goal lead.
"I think that if Grant makes that penalty shot, it might have been a completely different game for us," said Fairmont Area head coach Brady Meyer.
In the second, Worthington doubled its score when Oberloh netted an unassisted goal for his second of the game at 3:15.
Eight seconds later, Cardinal forward Brock Johnson cut the lead in half when he powered a shot past Scholtes.
Johnson controlled a pass from defensemen Trason Arens at neutral ice before carrying the puck into the Trojan zone on the right side and sent the shot just over Scholtes shoulder for the score.
Becker helped engineer another scoring chance when he dropped a pass to Kalon Wilson midway through the second, Scholtes turned Wilson's wrister away to maintain the Trojan lead.
"It just seemed like nothing was clicking for us tonight," said Meyer. "Offensively, defensively it just wasn't there tonight."
Later in the second, Leach took the Trojan scoring into his own hands, netting back-to-back goals at 7:25 and 6:25 to take a 4-1 lead.
Worthington's captain blasted an unassisted goal from the top of the faceoff circle in the Cardinal zone for his first lamp lighter of the night. His second goal came off a Mitchell Shreiner pass, setting up the quick shot just outside the crease.
Alex Kremer increased the Trojans' lead to 5-1 with an unassisted goal with 3:08 left in the middle frame.
Oberloh completed his hattrick 1:15 into the third on another one-timer goal combination from Leach to make it 6-1.
Rodney Engstrom gave the Cardinals a glimmer of hope with just under seven minutes left to play when he scored to make it 6-2.
Engstrom took an Arens pass, carried it into the Trojan zone and avoided one defender before blasting a slapshot from the top of the faceoff circle.
The Trojans managed a final goal from Sam Mills on Leach's third assist to clinch the 7-2 victory.
For Worthington, Scholtes turned away 29 of Fairmont Area's 31 shots on goal, while Derrick Hohensee stopped 27 of the Trojans' 34 shots on net.
Fairmont Area (1-3, 1-0 SCC) travels to New Ulm for a 7 p.m. South Central Conference game on Tuesday.
Worthington (1-5) travels to Waseca for a 2 p.m. nonconference game on Saturday.
W - Jacob Oberloh (Levi Leach), 3:06.
W - Jacob Oberloh (unassisted), 13;45.
F - Brock Johnson (Trason Arens), 13:37.
W - Levi Leach (unassisted), 7:25.
W - Levi Leach (Mitchell Shreiner), 6:25.
W - Alex Kremer (unassisted), 3:08.
W - Jacob Oberloh (Levi Leach), 15:55.
F - Rodney Engstrom (Trason Arens), 6:55.
W - Sam Mills (Levi Leach), 5:14.
Shots on goal: Worthington 11-12-11-34; Fairmont Area 9-5-17-31.
Saves: Rylan Scholtes (W) 9-4-16-29; Derrick Hohensee (FA) 10-8-9-27.
Penalties: Fairmont Area 5 for 13 minutes; Worthington 5 for 11.
Power-play chances: Fairmont Area 0 for 4; Worthington 0-5.