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Girls hockey: Cardinals knock off Brainerd/LF

BRAINERD — Willmar needed some time to crank up its offense but the Cardinals finally broke through with two third-period goals and they defeated Brainerd/Little Falls 3-1 on Tuesday night at the Brainerd Civic Arena.

BLF took an early lead but Riley Schneider knotted the game with a power play goal at 6:07 of the first.

From there, Willmar had chances but couldn’t convert, said head coach JaColby Anderson.

“That’s been our struggle all year (allowing opponents to score first),” Anderson said. “We have to find a way to change that. We could make it a lot easlier on ourselves.”

The Cardinals defense and goalie Madison Sandberg kept BLF off the board until Annie Johnston broke through with a goal at 11:56 of the third. Miranda Roelofs netted an empty-net goal in the last minute to seal the win.

“(Sandberg) kept us in the game until we could finally get it going offensively,” Anderson said. “We did a lot of good things defensively but our offense is not executing that well right now.”

Willmar 3,

Brainerd/Little Falls 1

Willmar (3-8-1 13-9-1)    1  0  2 — 3

Brainerd/LF (2-9 2-20-1)    1  0  0 — 1

FIRST PERIOD – BLF: Kristina Anderson (C.J. Kendall, Emily Stark) 2:12 … W: Riley Schneider (Miranda Roelofs, Annie Johnston) 6:07 pp

SECOND PERIOD – No scoring

THIRD PERIOD – W: Johnston (Schneider) 11:56 … W: Roelofs 16:21 en

GOALIE SAVES – Willmar: Madison Sandberg 24 … BLF: Sara Wennerstrand 18