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Chris Murphy, Published December 07 2013

St. Cloud scores late to top Moorhead in girls hockey

MOORHEAD – With Moorhead trailing by one goal, Spuds forward Marissa Herdt fired a wrister with 47.4 seconds left and Micaela Mjoness came back with a slap shot 8 seconds later against St. Cloud goalie Allie Rosenkrans.

Both shots were swallowed up by Rosenkrans, and the Icebreakers held on for a 2-1 win Saturday at Moorhead Sports Center.

Moorhead was one win away from the state tournament last season, and those expectations haven’t gone away, despite starting 2-4.

“We’re very optimistic of what our potential is,” Moorhead coach Kaylee Black said. “We have a younger team, but we have good chemistry as a team.”

The first period was all St. Cloud, which came in 5-0-1 in its last six games. The Icebreakers (6-1-1) fired 24 shots at Moorhead goalie Brianna Storms in the first period. Storms was able to stop 23 of them, but Tatum Peterson snuck one past thanks to Megan Milroy’s centering pass from behind the net. The Spuds were outshot 24-3 in the first frame, but only came away down 1-0.

“You can’t do much with three shots,” said Storms, who finished with 39 saves. “It looked like we were just skating around with our heads cut off. We had to work on our composure after that.”

Black made it simple for her team after a first period in which the Spuds had the same amount of penalties as shots.

“We said we needed to go back to basics and we needed to play 5-on-5 hockey, which we didn’t play a lot of,” Black said. “We started executing a better penalty kill and we got better shots.”

Moorhead got it together after the first period, more than doubling St. Cloud’s shots in the second period. One of those shots found the back of the net on the power play when Jenna Perreault fired in a rebound off a Herdt shot with 3 minutes, 30 seconds to go in the second period.

“We have a lot of high expectations of our team and our coaches, which we should,” Perreault said. “After the first period, we kind of relaxed more and played our game and didn’t let them take us completely away.”

With 4:20 remaining, St. Cloud forward Samantha Eisenreich made two Spuds miss and found Milroy, who fired in the game winner. The Spuds had to spend two of the final 3:15 seconds killing their seventh power play. Being outshot 41-27 and killing seven penalties finally caught up to the Spuds on Saturday, as they were unable to find the equalizer.

“They got a lot of depth,” Black said. “They roll their lines well. We got to be able to adjust to their speed. They are going to be a team we’re going to see later on, so we need to find a way to bounce back.”

FIRST PERIOD: 1, S, Peterson (Milroy), 4:21.

SECOND PERIOD: 2, M, Perreault (Herdt, Ludwig), 13:30, (pp).

THIRD PERIOD: 3, S, Milroy (Eisenreich), 12:40.

SAVES: S, Rosenkrans 3-16-7–26. M, Storms 23-8-8–39

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Chris Murphy at (701) 241-5548