Boys' hockey highlights
The North Shore Storm began its second season of play by participating in the Lake Superior Conference jamboree at the Heritage Center in Duluth. They defeated Proctor 2-0, Ashland 2-0 and lost 3-0 to Superior. They return 21 lettermen from last season's team and have added a foreign exchange student from Finland.
They return five players who finished with double figures in goals scored. Luke Small led the team in goals with 28, in assists with 26 and points with 54. Following him in goals scored were Tyler Schramm & Bradley Rowlee with 14, Jonah Koehler with 12 and Mills Johnson with 11. Following Small in the points category were seven others who scored in double digits. Johnson had 35, Schramm had 28, Rowlee 25, Koeler 24, Thomas Anderson 17, Mike Nordean 14 and Kory Buckman finished with 10. The team lost one defenseman and one forward to graduation. Zach Duresky returns in the nets, where he played every second of every game last season.
Last season the team finished at 14-11-1 in its first post-merger year. The season ended with a 6-1 sectional quarter-final loss to Hibbing. I look for this year's squad to improve on last season's record, especially if they stay healthy and show up for every game, which they didn't always do last season. They could possibly host a section quarter-final contest if things go well. They play Proctor at Proctor on Tuesday.
Mariner girls' open their hockey season
The Silver Bay girls broke a two game losing streak to open the season with 2-2 tie at Eveleth. Carrie Palmer tied the game at two with an assist from Tori Stevens, 42 seconds after the Golden Bears scored a final period power play goal. After a scoreless first period, Eveleth took the lead on a goal by Hannah Larson with 48 seconds left in the second period. Hattie Koehler tied it up for the Mariners early in the third, with Stevens assisting that goal also. The shots on goal were also tied at 31 as Mariner Sara Carman and Eveleth's Kora Bonicato each had 29 saves.
The Mariners opened their season at International Falls with a 6-3 loss. Amy Auran led the Broncos with a hat trick and they led 3-1 after one, and 4-2 after two. Hannah Johnson scored twice for the Mariners with Anna Carman assisting on each goal. Brooke McMillen with an assist from Sarah Fjeran, had the other Mariner score. Sara Carman stopped 42 Bronco shots compared to 21 for her counterpart, Taylor Fish.
Seven different Orono Spartans scored more than one point as they rolled to a 7-0 win at Two Harbors. Emily Knight scored twice and added an assist to go with three assists from Haley Nielsen and Madison Martini. Ellie Martini, Sarah Harrison, Brooklyn Duffy and Rebekah Smith each had a goal and an assist. The Mariners had two good scoring chances in the first period and three in the second, but couldn't get the puck across the goal line. Sara Carman finished with 35 stops in the Mariner nets, while Maddie Carlson had to stop only 10 Mariner shots as the Spartans depth gradually wore the Mariners down.
The girls travel to Thunder Bay today to play the Thunder Bay Queens and are at Hibbing on Tuesday.