December 12, 2003 at 11:41 a.m.
Spring Lake Park 1
Now that’s more like it.
After suffering from a massive scoring hangover from last year, last Tuesday the Chisago Lakes girls hockey team took a couple of aspirin and scored seven goals against Spring Lake Park. That’s after scoring six games through their first four games of the season.
It took a while for the medicine to work. It was the same old-same old for the ‘Cats in the first. Chisago Lakes again controlled the game by putting 10 shots on goal, only scoring once.
That one goal came just under seven minutes into the game on an unassisted goal from Nicole Grossmann, her fourth goal of the season, putting the Wildcats in front 1-0. Spring Lake Park answered with a goal of their own eight minutes later, leaving the score 1-1 after one.
Then it happened. All of a sudden, everything clicked. The ‘Cats were dominating like they always do, but this time, they started to show it on the scoreboard.
Still tied 1-1, Heather Medellin broke the tie with an even strength goal five minutes into the second. Grossmann picked up the lone assist. From there, Medellin did it again six minutes later with another goal, this time unassisted, pushing Chisago Lakes in front 3-1 after two. The two goals for Medellin were her first two of the season and the first score from the ‘Cats third line in quite some time.
“It took probably 21 to 22 games last year before we finally got a goal from our third line,” remarked Al Magnuson, Chisago Lakes girls hockey head coach. “Here, Heather gets two of them. That’s big because we need that type of scoring effort from all of our lines.”
Holding a 24-9 shot advantage after two, the Wildcats exploded for 15 more in the third, leading to four more goals. Not a bad shooting percentage.
Grossmann made it 4-1 early in the third period with her second goal of the game before Lexi Medellin got into the act, scoring the fifth goal of the game and her second of the season. Grossmann picked up the hat trick 20 seconds later to push the score to 6-1. Then Anne Fredrickson capped everything off with the most exciting moment in hockey, scoring on a penalty shot at the 13:17 mark. Chisago Lakes finished the game with seven goals on 39 shots (18 percent).
“Our goal was to get 40 shots on net and we finished with 39,” commented Magnuson. “Our confidence level is really starting to pick up. It’s a lot more fun for the girls to score seven goals. It’s fun also to be able to relax a little bit at the end and to not be pressing so much, putting them away right away.”
Grossmann led the Wildcats on the scoresheet with three goals and one assist, pushing season point total to seven. Along with Heather Medellin, Amanda Rammer also had two points, both assists.
The win evened the ‘Cats season record at 2-2 with state contender Totino-Grace on the way.
Chisago Lakes 7
Spring Lake Park 1
1 2 3 F
Spring Lake Park 1 -- -- 1
Chisago Lakes 1 2 4 7
1) CL- Grossmann (unassisted) 6:51; 2) SLP- McGuire (Hayes) 14:47.
3) CL- H. Medellin (Grossmann) 5:11; 4) CL- H. Medellin (unassisted) 11:33.
5) CL- Grossmann (Lukas, Rammer) 1:25; 6) CL- Lexi Medellin (unassisted) 7:17; 8) CL- Grossmann (Rammer) 7:37; 9) CL- Fredrickson (penalty shot) 13:17
Chisago Lakes 5
Whatever it was that changed the tides, don’t change a thing.
Two days after scoring seven goals, the Wildcats played their best game in arguably the history of the program, shocking everyone by destroying state ranked Totino-Grace 5-0. The fact that the Wildcats won wasn’t as surprising as how they did it.
“It was as close to a perfect game as I think you can get,” replied Magnuson. “We dominated them. We didn’t skate just one period, we skated the entire game. I don’t know if there is a team in the state that could’ve beaten us that night.”
A dangerous, but true statement.
The Wildcats took the ice with the jets burning full blast. Rhiannon Sauter got things going in the first with a goal five minutes into the game, giving the ‘Cats a 1-0 lead after one. Fredrickson and Lexi Medellin picked up the assists as Chisago Lakes outshot the Eagles 12-2 in the period.
That was just the beginning.
In the second, believe it or not, the Wildcats got even quicker. Despite being called for two penalties in the period, the ‘Cats increased their lead to 2-0 on a Rammer goal at the 11:34 mark. Amanda Waltz added to the score, pushing the lead to 3-0 late in the period on a shot from the point. The blast pin-balled through the Totino-Grace defense before settling in between the pads of Eagles goalie Nicole Mertz. The score remained 3-0 after two.
“I think the more confidence they got, they faster they got,” smiled Magnuson. “They just dominated the game in every which way you can. Our speed definitely showed up and it was too much for them. If we can skate like that the rest of the season, we’re going to be a force to be reckoned with .”
In the third, they just got stronger. Another strange bounce in front of the net led to a Kelly Magnuson goal five minutes into the third. Magnuson was the second defensemen to score in the game for Chisago. Right on cue, just seven minutes later, Ariel Novak, another defenseman, picked up a goal on a slapshot from the point. The score was the first of Novak’s varsity career, she’s just an eighth-grader!
Leading 5-0, the Wildcats did not let down until the final buzzer, preserving a 5-0 shutout for goalie Jackie Weiden who faced only five shots in the game. Meanwhile, the Wildcats peppered Mertz with 42 shots.
“Three defensemen scored, that was nice to see our defense get involved,” said Magnuson. “They kept the puck low and made it hard for them to see. Lately, we’ve been shooting that puck right into the goalie’s glove, so we stressed to them, keep it low. I mean, it was just great to see everyone contribute in one way or another. I remember looking at the scoresheet after the game and seeing that we outshot them 42-5 and all of the coaches said wow. They played better than anyone of us could have expected.”
What a time to do it. The win moved the Wildcats record to 3-2 on the season and 2-1 in the conference. Up next, two more conference battles with Rogers and Wright County, both on the road. What a perfect time to hit their stride.
Chisago Lakes 5
1 2 3 F
Totino-Grace - - - 0
Chisago Lakes 1 2 2 5
1) CL- Sauter (Fredrickson, L. Medellin) 5:50
2) CL- Rammer (Grossmann) 11:34; 3) CL- Waltz (Grossmann) 13:33
4) CL- Magnuson (Lukas) 4:49; 5) CL- Novak (Grossmann, Patterson) 12:31