The championship game featured Brainerd/Little Falls vs. Breck. Many, including me, thought this would be the third place game. But that’s why we play the game! Breck, coming off their upset win over Edina in the semifinal, had to be the favorite going into the game. But Brainerd was having none of that. The first period was pretty even with Brainerd having a small edge in shots at 7-6 and the score was tied 1-1. Cheyenne Abear scored a short handed goal for the Warriors at 10:18 of the first and Emily Zumwinkle of Breck scored a PP goal 1:10 later to even it up. Brainerd pushed the pace in the second outshooting Breck 15-5 in that frame but the two teams remained tied at 2s. Breck’s Sadie Lindsay gave Breck their only lead of the game scoring just 1:33 into the second. From there is was all Brainerd. Cheyenne Abear scored her second of the game to tie up again before the second intermission. The action for Brainerd started quickly in the third as Abby Pohlkamp scored just 1:05 into the final period. That turned out to be the game winner. Abby scored an insurance goal at the 5:33 mark to give Brainerd the 4-2 lead and that is where the game ended.
Brainerd was dominant in the last two games outshooting their opponents 58-34 and outscoring them 6-2. There should be no movement in the top 5 rankings of Class AA but I imagine Roseau and Brainerd will replace EP and Maple Grove at #6 and #7 in the rankings.
Schwan’s Cup Gold
It was easy to predict the Andover vs. Blake final. That is exactly what we got. In atypical fashion, the scoring started slowly for both teams. Blake had the edge in shots in the first frame, 10-6, but there were no goals scored for either team and they went into the first intermission locked at 0s. An early second period Blake penalty put Andover on the PP. What is the best way to neutralize one of the best PP units in the state? Score a shorty of course. So that is what Blake’s Lily Delianides did. Blake’s Isabel Meyer was able to clear the puck of the D zone draw and Lily Delianides used her speed to track it down below the face off dot in the far zone and get off a far side high rocket to give Blake the early lead. Blake was able to take a 2 goal lead on a beautiful pass from Delianides to Izzy Daniel on the 2v1 rush. Andover was able to cut the lead to 1 on late second period goal from Peyton Hemp. Blake held the 2-1 lead coming out of the second intermission but Andover was able to keep their late second period momentum going in the third. Andover tied it up when Gabby Krause was able to split and get behind two Blake defenders and score 1v0 on the Blake goalie. Andover was able to take a one goal lead barely two minutes later on nifty backhand pass off the end boards from Peyton Hemp to Gabby Krause who was able to one time it into the back of the net. But Blake was not done. Blake’s Addie Burton was able to bury a rebound off an Izzy Daniel shot to tie it up at 3s with just 3:31 to go in the game. With just over one minute remaining in the game Blake’s Izzy Daniel possessed the puck below the offensive goal line and was able to feed Maddie Wethington at the left point. Maddie let a one timer bomb go that found the back of the net and gave Blake the Championship. Fantastic finish to a fantastic game featuring two fantastic teams.
Schwan’s Cup Silver
Jefferson had a heckuva run to make it to the final where they met up with Buffalo. They upset Cambridge in game 1 and then did it again in game 2 beating Rochester Lourdes. Period one of the championship game was all Buffalo. Shots favored them 17-4 and the score was 1-0. Jefferson got their groove back in the second outshooting Buffalo 11-6 but they were unable to capitalize and the score remained 1-0 Buffalo after 2. Buffalo turned the tide in their favor in the third. Raegan Wurm scored at 10:26 and Julia McAlpin added a third goal at 13:32 and that is where we ended. 3-0 Buffalo. Buffalo goalie Kennedy Sohler with the 23 save shutout.
Schwan’s Cup Bronze
As in the Gold Division this final was pretty easy to predict, too. East Ridge probably shouldn’t have been in the Bronze Division and you could make a case for Minneapolis being too good to be in this division, too. So you can see why this was an easy one to predict. East Ridge got out to an early lead with a goal coming from Anne Larsen at 2:12 of the first. The score would remain at 1-0 going into the start of the second. Addi Scriber would add to East Ridge’s lead with a PP goal at the 12:47 mark. East Ridge would take a 2 goal lead into the second intermission. Minneapolis got on the board in the third with a Piper Sorock goal which cut the lead to 1. But East Ridge would take advantage of another penalty on Minneapolis on a Lauren Beaubien PP goal. East Ridge would take home the championship with the 3-1 victory.
Roseau took down Minnetonka 2-1 in the semifinal in what was a very good game. They faced tourney host EP in the final. The first period of the championship game was all EP. They held a 12-7 shot advantage and a 1-0 lead after one. Roseau got back on the right side of things by scoring two goals in the second. The first being Kate Helgeson from Ella Helgeson and Sophie Helgeson. Yup, three Helgesons in on that goal! Anika Stoskopf scored at 8:40 of the second to give them a lead they would never give up. Roseau opened the third by scoring two more (that’s four unanswered goals for those keeping track) before EP would get back on the board on a Christina Spanier goal. Roseau’s Kayla Santl would add an empty netter to give the Rams a 5-2 win and the Mid-Winter Meltown Championship.
More to come….