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Prep Girls Hockey Roundup: Willmar bounces back to top Hutchinson

Cardinals snap a two-game skid with a 3-1 win over Tigers

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Willmar freshman Hannah Bredesen attempts a shot on net on Tuesday, Nov. 30, against Hutchinson at the Willmar Civic Center. Matthew Curry / West Central Tribune
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WILLMAR — One week after losing to River Lakes, the Willmar girls hockey team snapped its two-game losing streak with a 3-1 win over Hutchinson.

The Cardinals outshot the Tigers 32-22 and made good use of their power-play opportunities, scoring twice with the extra skater advantage.

“We came into this game and we just said we gotta get back to what we do, play our game,” Cardinals’ coach Eric Setrum said. “We needed to control the puck, use our speed, don’t try to beat people 1-on-1, Just look out for their teammates and play hard.”

Sophomore Chloe Lownsbury gave Willmar the lead with a power-play goal in the first period.

After a scoreless second period, Willmar freshman Lauren Eilers scored an unassisted goal two minutes into the third period to take a 2-0 lead.

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Hutchinson sophomore Kohle Fitterer attempted to bring momentum back to the Tigers with a goal in the fourth minute of the third to narrow the deficit back to one.

After Hutchinson was called for a two minute penalty, Willmar senior Nina Dawson converted on the power-play with a goal nearly 10 minutes into the final period, leading to the eventual 3-1 final.

“I think we started a little slow but we finished really strong,” Setrum said. “We started to control the puck more at the end and got more quality chances and better chances. It showed that we had a few days off due to Thanksgiving and everything. But I was glad with how it played out.”

Willmar hits the road to play Litchfield/Dassel-Cokato at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Litchfield Civic Center.

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Willmar freshman Lauren Eilers (13) battles with Addie Longie (left) and Lauren Nelson (16) for the puck on Tuesday, Nov. 30, against Hutchinson at the Willmar Civic Center. Matthew Curry / West Central Tribune

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Willmar sophomore Becca Dawson looks to connect with the puck on Tuesday, Nov. 30, against Hutchinson at the Willmar Civic Center. Matthew Curry / West Central Tribune

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Hutchinson (0-4-0) 0 0 1 — 1
Willmar (2-2-0) 1 0 2 — 3
FIRST PERIOD – (1) W: Chloe Lownsbury (Makenna Larson, Nina Dawson), 15:58 PP.
SECOND PERIOD – No scoring.
THIRD PERIOD – (2) W: Lauren Eilers (unassisted), 2:26 … (3) H: Kohle Fitterer (Brooklyn Nemitz), 4:14 … (4) W: Dawson (Larson, Hannah Bredeson), 9:36 PP.
GOALIE SAVES/SHOTS – Hutchinson: Stella Docken 29/32 … Willmar: Halle Mortensen 21/22.

Fergus Falls 1, River Lakes 0

Fergus Falls emerged victorious in a battle of top 20 teams on Tuesday, shutting out River Lakes at Koronis Civic Arena in Paynesville.

The Otters came into the game ranked 20th while the Stars are 10th.

River Lakes will try to bounce back Thursday at Brainerd/Little Falls.

Matthew Curry is a sports reporter and photographer for the West Central Tribune.
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