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Boys Hockey: Willmar blanks Fergus

FERGUS FALLS -- Willmar finally broke the ice against Fergus Falls, beating the Otters for the first time 2-0 at the Fairgrounds Arena on Friday night.

Junior goalie Ben Leitch and the Cardinals' defense earned their first shutout since River Lakes Dec. 9.

Grant Schow and Jay Bredberg got the goals, both in the second period. Willmar defused a 6-3 Otters' advantage in the last minute of the third period.

"Ben made a huge save to start the transition that led to Schow's goal," said Willmar coach Dan Tollefson. "(Trent) Fader took it up the boards on an odd-man rush, shorthanded, drew the defender and put a pass on Grant's forehand. He one-timed it."

Bredberg was covered out front but got a pass from Rory Schneider, kicked the puck to his stick blade and beat Fergus Falls goalie Jason Loftquist, who finished with 29 saves.

Willmar (3-10, 7-13), which had lost three straight, will try and put together a February win streak when St. Cloud Apollo plays at the Civic Center Tuesday.

Willmar and Fergus Falls (4-10, 7-13-1) meet again Feb. 19 in Willmar.

Willmar hadn't beaten the Otters since they joined the CLC four years ago nor in several non-conference and post-season games before that.

Willmar 2, Fergus Falls 0

Willmar (3-10, 7-13) 0 2 0 -- 2

Fergus Falls (4-10, 7-13-1) 0 0 0 -- 0

FIRST PERIOD - No scoring

SECOND PERIOD - Wil: Grant Schow (Trent Fader), sh, 2:00 ... Wil: Jeff Bredberg (Rory Schneider) 14:58

THIRD PERIOD - No scoring

GOALIE SAVES - Willmar: Ben Leitch 20 ... Fergus Falls: Jason Lofquist 29

Late Thursday result Non-Conference

MBA 2, Prairie Centre 1

Mike Morales scored the game-winner for MBA with 1:44 left.

Prairie Centre (6-11-1) 1 0 0 -- 1

MBA (10-7-1) 0 0 2 -- 2

FIRST PERIOD - Colby Deters (unassisted) 13:44

SECOND PERIOD - No scoring

THIRD PERIOD - MBA: Ethan Ratcliff-Crain (Brady Vaines) 7:34 ... MBA: Mike Morales (Tyler Hansen) 16:16

GOALIE SAVES - Prairie Centre: Marcus Tomsche 22 ... Morris/Benson Area: Will Johnson 27