Luverne girls hockey skates by Fairmont Area, 6-4

TRAFFIC JAM — Fairmont Area’s Mackenzie Householder (9) tries to poke the puck away from Luverne’s Rozilyn Oye (red 11) and Brynn Thier (far right) during Big South Conference hockey action in front of Luverne goalie Mallory Von Tersch on Tuesday night at Martin County Arena. Fairmont Area’s Emily Sokoloski (white 11) watches the play. (Photo by Greg Abel)

FAIRMONT — Kamryn Van Batavia’s four goals led Luverne.

The Luverne Cardinals beat the Fairmont Cardinals 6-4 in a Big South Conference girls hockey game at Martin County Arena on Tuesday night.

Van Batavia opened the game’s scoring with back-to-back goals in the first period on her way to a four-goal game. Her first came with 12:37 left in the opening period off an assist from Reghan Bork. Van Borten’s second came a minute and a half later unassisted when she had a shot blocked by Fairmont Area goalie Rachel O’Connor, then grabbed the ensuing rebound and put the puck in the net.

Fairmont Area responded quickly with two goals of its own. Anna Nordquist scored with an assist from Hannah Goerndt at the 10:38 mark in the opening segment. Goerndt took a shot on goal, which was blocked, and Nordquist grabbed the ricochet and wristed the puck into the bottom left corner of the net.

Emily Sokoloski scored the second Fairmont Area goal with 9:45 left in the first period off a helper from Mackenzie Householder. Householder stopped a shot directly in front of the net and passed back to Sokoloski for a one-timer into the left side of the webbing.

Luverne broke the tie with 2:58 left in the segment when Shelby Kracht scored off an assist from Claire Baustian.

Fairmont Area head coach Ashley Olson said she made some changes to her team before the game and she thought they worked well.

“We did some mixing of the lines and I think it worked,” Olson said. “The two lines that we had really worked well together and we did a good job of being able to come back when Luverne put goals in.”

Each team scored once in the second period.

Luverne’s Brynn Thierr scored the visiting Cardinals’ goal unassisted with 7:29 left in the middle segment, while Macy Militello scored with a double assist from Joni Becker and Mackenzie Householder with 2:56 left to pull the hometown Cardinals within one.

Luverne scored two insurance goals in the final period, both from Van Batavia. She scored unassisted with 7:24 left to claim a hat trick, then unassisted again with 5:07 remaining for her fourth goal of the matchup.

Becker scored the final goal of the game off an assist from Sokoloski to bring Fairmont Area within two.

Olson said her team was able to keep up with the conference leaders because it was getting a lot of shots on goal and winning races to the puck.

Luverne outshot Fairmont Area 39-18 in the matchup.

O’Connor made 33 saves in net for Fairmont Area.

Olson said O’Connor was a key in the game.

“She made some really huge saves for us and she really kept us in the game,” Olson said.

Fairmont Area (3-13, 3-8 Big South) plays host to Worthington on Thursday at 7 p.m.

Luverne (12-4-2, 9-2 Big South) plays again Thursday at Morris/Benson Area.

Luverne 3-1-2–6

Fairmont 2-1-1–4

Scoring Plays

1st Period

LVN–Kamryn Van Batavia (Reghan Bork), 12:37.

LVN–Kamryn Van Batavia (unassisted), 11:03.

FMT–Anna Nordquist (Hannah Goerndt), 10:38.

FMT–Emily Sokolski (Mackenzie Householder), 9:45.

LVN–Shelby Kracht (Claire Baustian), 2:58.

2nd Period

LVN–Brynn Thier (unassisted), 7:29.

FMT–Macy Militello (Joni Becker, Mackenzie Householder), 2:56.

3rd Period

LVN–Kamryn Van Batavia (unassisted), 7:24.

LVN–Kamryn Van Batavia (unassisted), 5:07.

FMT–Joni Becker (Emily Sokoloski), 2:37.

Shots on goal: Luverne 39; Fairmont Area 18.

Saves: Mallory Von Tersch (LVN) 14; Rachel O’Connor (FMT) 33.

Penalties: Luverne 0 for 0 minutes; Fairmont Area 1 for 2 minutes.

Power-play chances: Luverne 1 for 1; Fairmont Area 0 for 0.