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Girls Hockey: Cards win in regular-season finale

Willmar senior forward Rebecca Freese, right, scored two goals to help the Cardinals defeat Brainerd/Little Falls 5-1 on Thursday at Cardinal Arena. Tribune photo by Tom Larson.

Tribune Staff Report

WILLMAR -- After a sluggish start, the Willmar girls hockey team took control on both ends of the ice and defeated Brainerd/Little Falls 5-1 on Friday at Cardinal Arena.

"We started slow but we picked up the pace and started making some really nice plays," said Willmar head coach Jason Mayer. "We did what we've done the last few games but tonight we started scoring."

The Cardinals finished the regular season 4-6-2 in the Central Lakes Conference and 12-9-2 overall. They find out their section playoff seeding today. Willmar plays in the same section as Mound-Westonka, Mankato East, Mankato West, Hutchinson, St. Peter and Litchfield/Dassel-Cokato.

The Flying Warriors opened the scoring with a goal in the first six minutes, but Rebecca Freese tied the score later in the first.

Freese gave Willmar the lead for good with her second goal in the second period, and Shelby Schneider, Alex Sobieck and KyLee Hulscher tacked on third period goals to support goalie Baylie Young's 29 saves.

Willmar 5, Brainerd/LF 1

Brainerd/LF (3-8 3-20) 1 0 0 -- 1

Willmar (4-6-2 12-9-2) 1 1 3 -- 5

FIRST PERIOD - B: Zoe Wolhart (Tory Brown) 5:03 ... W: Rebecca Freese (Brooke Mayer, Samantha Block) 15:59

SECOND PERIOD - B: R.Freese (KyLee Hulscher, Brooke Mayer) 12:44

THIRD PERIOD - W: Shelby Schneider 1:02 ... W: Alex Sobieck (Miranda Roelofs, Kendra Maxfield) 5:50 ... W: Hulscher (Mayer, Allison Freese)

GOALIE SAVES - Brainerd/Little Falls: Jodi Bertrand 24 ... Willmar: Baylie Young 29

River Lakes 6,

Fergus Falls 4

(At Paynesville) -- River Lakes broke the game open with three straight third-period goals and defeated Fergus Falls on Thursday.

Six different players scored goals for River Lakes, which finished the regular season 13-11-1 overall and 6-5-1 in the Central Lakes Conference.

The Stars find out their section playoff seeding on Monday.

Fergus dropped to 1-10 in the CLC and 4-19 overall.

Fergus Falls (4-19) 1 1 2 -- 4

River Lakes (13-11-1) 2 1 3 -- 6

FIRST PERIOD - R: Natasha Meed (Alyssa Carlson, Sydney Caron) 8:04 ... F: May Swiontek (Maddy Hershner) 12:07 ... R: Rachael Prozinski (Erin Porwoll, Shelby Teal) 15:47

SECOND PERIOD - F: Swiontek (Sydney Kuehl, Hershner) 4:37 ... R: Jessica Kooiman (Prozinski) 9:02 pp

THIRD PERIOD - R: Carley Roda (Jessica Kooiman, Jocie Kooiman) 1:30 ... R: Teal (Prozinski) 6:51 ... F: Lauren Norgren 11:00 ... R: Porwoll (Teal) 11:34 ... F: Kuehl (Annie Magnuson) 12:28

GOALIE SAVES - Fergus Falls: Jordie Salwei 14, Katie Shelstad 2 ... River Lakes: Dominique Jungels 35