FAIRMONT - The Fairmont Area Cardinals girls hockey team held a pair of two-goal leads over the Waseca Bluejays during South Central Conference hockey action on Monday at Martin County Arena in Fairmont.
Unfortunately for the Cardinals, each time they took the lead, the Bluejays found a way to answer, as the teams skated to a 4-4 tie.
"We have gotten better as the season has come along, but we still need to be able to finish in a game like this one," said Fairmont Area head coach Scott Kuhl. "This is a type of game that we want to be able to come away with a win."
FINDING THE GAP — Fairmont Area’s Katie Hohensee (5) slices between Waseca defender Averi Dahlberg (12) and Bluejay goaltender Danni Dahms during South Central Conference hockey action on Monday night at Martin County Arena in Fairmont. (Photo by Leanna Becker)
Jalyssa Wilson, who nearly had a hattrick and the almost game-winning goal, struck for the first of her two goals 1:38 into the game.
Tieryn Arens corraled the puck at center ice, sliding a pass to Wilson streaking down the wing. Wilson then manuvered around a Bluejay defender, sliding the puck onto her forehand to get the puck into the Bluejays' zone.
Wilson then moved the puck back to her backhand, and flipped a shot past the Waseca goaltender for the 1-0 lead.
Myah Lytle then doubled the Cardinals lead at the 4:04 mark with the help of a Brooke Lemon blocked shot.
Lemon fired a shot out in front of the net, but Bluejays netminder, Danni Dahms blocked it with her leg pad for one of her 34 saves.
Fortunately for the Cardinals, Lytle was poised for the rebound, and snapped a shot into the net.
The Bluejays were quick to respond in the second period, scoring a pair of goals in the first 6:30.
Just 1:18 into the middle frame, Anna Hoehn cut the Waseca deficit in half with her first of two goals in the game.
Olivia McIntosh fired a pass behind the net to Katelyn Miller, who found Hoehn driving towards the net.
Hoehn caught Miller's pass and snapped the twine with a wrister to make it 2-1.
McIntosh, who tallied two goals and one assist in the game, netted her first with 10:30 left in the second.
The Cardinals defense lost the puck at the blue line, and McIntosh picked it up and carried it down into the Fairmont Area zone. With a breakaway opportunity, McIntosh evened the game at 2-2.
The Cardinals responded with two goals before the period ended to retake their lead.
Kelsy Junkermeier gave Fairmont Area the 3-2 lead with 7:32 left in the second, burying a rebounded shot from the point.
Logyn Cone zipped a shot to her defensive linemate Jenna Klages along the blue line, before Klages fired a shot towards the Bluejays goal.
The shot was tipped by a Waseca defender, but Dahms was able to make the save, and Junkermeier was waiting on the doorstep and banged home the goal.
One minute and 10 seconds later, Wilson netted her second goal of the night to go ahead 4-2.
Wilson poke checked the puck away from the Bluejay defenders and raced ahead for the breakaway, firing a wrister past Dahms with 6:22 left in the second.
"Tonight's game was just like the one we played just a few days ago in Waseca," said Kuhl. "Both times they found a way to come back."
McIntosh and Hoehn were the difference makers in the third, evening the game for the second time less that seven minutes in.
McIntosh carried the puck into the Cardinal zone, firing a shot from the wing that found the net 6:34 into the final frame.
Hoehn then got some help from Maddy Knoll and McIntosh for the game-tying goal.
McIntosh won the faceoff in the Cardinal zone to the left of Fairmont Area goaltender Sadie Sandersfeld.
The Bluejay captain, then zipped a pass to Knoll in the corner, who found Hoehn in the slot.
Hoehn sent the pass sizzling past Sandersfeld and evened the game.
Sandersfeld finished with 28 saves for the Cardinals, while Fairmont Area fired 38 shots on goal.
Waseca recorded 32 shots on net in the game.
No. 4-seeded Fairmont Area (9-10-1, 1-4-4 SCC) plays host to No. 5-seeded Windom Area in the Section 3A quarterfinals at 7 p.m. on Friday at Martin County Arena in Fairmont.
The No. 8-seed Waseca (7-9-2, 3-2-1 SCC) travels to play the No. 1-seeded Red Wing in the Section 1A quarterfinals at 7 p.m. Wednesday night in Red Wing.
FA - Jalyssa Wilson (Tieryn Arens), 15:22.
FA - Myah Lytle (Brooke Lemon), 12:56.
W - Anna Hoehn (Katelyn Miller, Olivia McIntosh), 15:42.
W - Olivia McIntosh (unassisted), 10:30.
FA - Kelsy Junkermeier (Jenna Klages, Logyn Cone), 7:32.
FA - Jalyssa Wilson (unassisted), 6:22.
W - Olivia McIntosh (unassisted), 10:26.
W - Anna Hoehn (Maddy Knoll, Olivia McIntosh), 10:18.
Shots on goal: Waseca 32; Fairmont Area 38.
Saves: Danni Dahms (W) 34; Sadie Sandersfeld (FA) 28.
Penalties: Fairmont Area 4 for 8 minutes; Waseca 3 for 6 minutes.