Bulldogs collar Cardinals in 5-1 hockey clash

BLOCKED SHOT — Fairmont Area’s Jozie Hoefker (7) blocks a shot by Minnesota River’s Cristina Cruz (5) during Big South Conference hockey action Tuesday night at Martin County Arena in Fairmont. Cardinals’ goaltender Ilana Moeller, Bella Larson (4) and Shaye Dietz (2) watch the action. (Photo by Greg Abel)

FAIRMONT– The Fairmont Area girls hockey team lost to Minnesota River, 5-1, Tuesday night. The Bulldogs were propelled to victory by freshman forward Mckenna Andresen, who scored a goal and assisted on another.

The Cardinals fell to 0-4 on the young season and look to make adjustments in order to get into the win column.

One major change implemented by Fairmont Area on Tuesday night was a slightly more defensively-focused senior captain forward Bella Larson.

“We were running three and four lines just to give first and second line a little more time off the ice in hopes to get a little more production when they come on,” Cardinals head coach Eric Householder said. “It wasn’t so much that we wanted to help Bella’s lines, but to get the others a little bit more of a break to recover.”

Throughout the game Larson did her best to gain possession of the puck for the Cardinals, but the stick skills of the Bulldogs proved to be too much.

With Minnesota River controlling the pace of play, it was up to Fairmont Area junior goalkeeper Ilana Moeller to keep the Cardinals in it.

Moeller finished the night with a game-leading 42 saves and did her best to withstand the Bulldogs’ barrage on the net.

“Obviously the goal is to mitigate the amount of shots she faces,” Householder said. “That’s something that we’ve been cognizent of the first four games and we have been struggling with it, which in turn gives the opposing team a lot more shots on goal, but she has been huge in saving us from really bad losses like 10-1, so we appreciate her keeping us in games.”

It was just the opposite story for the Bulldogs, as sophomore goalie Annika Magelee faced just 14 shots over the course of the game.

One potential reason why the Cardinals had such a hard time getting good opportunities to score was their penalty time.

The Cardinals had multiple penalties in each of the three periods, forcing them to play a much less aggressive brand of hockey. The culmination of these penalties occurred in the third period when Fairmont Area freshman forward Frankie Martin picked up a penalty of her own.

“It was a 10-minute misconduct penalty and it just comes down to when you’re on the ice and you don’t like the way something plays out, you cannot say anything to the referee,” Householder said. “I mean that’s what it comes down to you know chirping at the ref, you know wrong ref, wrong time.”

Fairmont Area (0-4) looks to clean up its play as the Cardinals face off against Waseca (3-1-1) on the road on Thursday night.

MN River    3 1 1 — 5

Fairmont    0 0 1 — 1

Scoring Plays

1st Period

MR–Mara Von Bank (unassisted) PP.

MR–Noelle Simonette (assisted by Mckenna Andresen) PP.

MR–Piper Winters (assisted by Cristina Cruz) PP.

2nd Period

MR–Callie Voeltz (assisted by Zetta Haugen).

3rd Period

FA–Bella Larson (assisted by Keara Flanagan) SH.

MR–Mckenna Andresen (unassisted) SH.

Boys Hockey

Minnesota River 14, Fairmont Area 0 — The Fairmont Area boys hockey squad fell to Minnesota River in their Big South Conference season-opener Tuesday night in Le Sueur.

Carried to victory by a dominant balanced attack, Minnesota River got its season off to a hot start.

The Bulldogs were led by forward Drew Simonette, who netted a hat trick in the blowout.

Joining Simonette in the scoring column for the Bulldogs was Dylan Westerman, who scored two goals and teammate Kellen O’Keefe, who found his teammates in the right spots finishing the night with four assists.

The Fairmont Area boys team (0-1) hopes to bounce back by playing host to Waseca on Thursday night at Martin County Arena in Fairmont.


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