Hockey roundup: St. Cloud crushes Willmar, 9-1

Prep hockey report for Thursday, Jan. 26, 2023, in west central Minnesota. Crush erase Cardinals’ early 1-0 lead in a Central Lakes Conference game

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Willmar senior Elijah Van Buren skates the puck in the neutral zone against St. Cloud on Thursday, Jan. 26, 2023, at Willmar Civic Center.
Michael Lyne / West Central Tribune

WILLMAR — Willmar scored the first goal of the game before St. Cloud rattled off nine consecutive goals en route to a 9-1 victory on Thursday at Willmar Civic Center.

Leading the Crush’s effort was senior defenseman Andrew Cumming. He scored two goals, including the game-winning goal in the second period, and notched four assists.

The Cardinals and St. Cloud were tied after one period of play. Then the Crush tallied five goals in the second period and added three more in the third.

Fourteen skaters recorded at least one point for St. Cloud. Five skaters had at least two points.

Cards fall to the Crush, 9-1


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Willmar sophomore Bobby Poe protects the puck with St. Cloud's Reece Gronseth defending him during a game between the Cardinals and Crush on Thursday, Jan. 26, 2023, at Willmar Civic Center.
Michael Lyne / West Central Tribune

The Crush kept Willmar goaltender Braxton Heid busy all game. He stopped 33 of 42 shots.

St. Cloud went 3-for-6 on the power-play. The goals scored on the man advantage came from Ben Eiynck, Cumming and Andrew Loch.

Cardinals junior center Cullen Gregory scored for Willmar at 2:49 of the first period.

Gregory, a right-handed shot, has 15 goals and four assists in 15 games this season.

Willmar plays Prairie Centre at 5 p.m. Friday at Sauk Centre Civic Arena.

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Willmar junior Charles Swart (left) celebrates a goal scored by junior Cullen Gregory (right) against St. Cloud on Thursday, Jan. 26, 2023, at Willmar Civic Center.
Michael Lyne / West Central Tribune

Boys Hockey

St. Cloud 9, Willmar 1

St. Cloud (6-7-1)          1     5     3 — 9
Willmar (5-10)              1     0     0 — 1

FIRST PERIOD –  (1) W: Cullen Gregory (Charles Swart, Gabriel LaRue), 2:49 … (2) SC: Joe Hess (Andrew Cumming, Caden Koehn), 15:14.
SECOND PERIOD –  (3) SC: Cumming (Ben Eiynck, Lukas O’Donnell), 2:36 … (4) SC: Ben Eiynck ( O’Donnell, Ryan Behl), 4:42 PP … (5) Ben Ruehle (Jack Fitch, Behl), 4:53 … (6) SC: Devan Finnegan (Caden Koehn, Max Kiffmeyer), 11:34 … (7) SC: Cumming, 16:25 PP.
THIRD PERIOD – (8) SC: Blake O’Hara (Cumming), 1:28 … (9) SC: Andrew Loch (Cxumming, Reece Gronseth), 11:27 PP … (10) SC: Eiynck (Will Allenspach, Cumming), 16:47 PP.
GOALIE SAVES/SHOTS – St. Cloud: Ethan Quinn 14/15 … Willmar: Braxton Heid 33/42


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Willmar senior goaltender Braxton Heid makes a save against St. Cloud on Thursday, Jan. 26, 2023, at Willmar Civic Center.
Michael Lyne / West Central Tribune

Litchfield/D-C 2, Mound-Westonka 0

Travis Halonen made 26 saves to earn the shutout for Litchfield/Dassel-Cokato in a Wright County Conference match at the Litchfield Civic Arena.

Jaxon Gustafson scored on the power play for the Chargers at 2:18 of the second period. That’s where the score stayed until Carson Wendorff sealed it with an empty net goal at 16:51 of the third.

Litchfield/D-C next plays Prairie Center at noon Saturday at the Sauk Centre Civic Arena.

M-W (4-14)                0     0     0 — 0
L/D-C (12-5-2)           0     1     1 — 2

FIRST PERIOD –  No scoring
SECOND PERIOD –  (1) LDC: Jaxon Gustafson (Braden Olson) 2:18, PP
THIRD PERIOD – (2) LDC: Carson Wendorff (unassisted), 16:51, EN
GOALIE SAVES/SHOTS – Mound-Westonka: Mason Evenson 39/40 … Litchfield/Dassel-Cokato: Travis Halonen 26/26

Becker/BL at River Lakes, canceled

Becker/Big Lake was forced to cancel its game with River Lakes because of illness. That’s according to the River Lakes boys hockey Twitter account.

“Unfortunately our game tonight is canceled due to sickness going through Becker/BL,” it said.


The Stars play host to Pine City Area at 3:15 p.m. Saturday at the River Lakes Civic Arena in Richmond.

Girls Hockey

M-W/SWC 9, Litchfield/D-C 2

Ellie Schmid had a hat trick and Camryn Hargreaves scored two goals and an assist as Mound-Westonka/Southwest Christian defeated Litchfield/Dassel-Cokato in a Wright County Conference game at the David M. Thaler Sports Center in Mound.

Krista Tormanen and Isabella Struck scored goals for Litchfield/D-C.

Litchfield/D-C plays Holy Family at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Victoria Ice Arena.

L/D-C (10-9-3)               0     1     1 — 2
M-W/SWC (15-7)           3     4     2 — 9

FIRST PERIOD –  (1) MW: Ellie Schmid (Gisella Harder) … (2) MW: Schmid (Harder, Lizzy Callahan) … (3) MW: Callahan (Gretta Pioske) PP.
SECOND PERIOD –  (4) MW: Schmid (Harder, Ali Butler) … (5) MW: Pioske (Camryn Hargreaves, Greer Hardacre) … (6) L/D-C: Krista Tormanen (unassisted) … (7) MW: Georgia Harmer (Emily Wendorf) … (8) Hargreaves (Hardacre, Callahan), PP.
THIRD PERIOD – (9) MW: Hargreaves (Pioske) … (10) MW: Hardacre (unassisted) … (11) L/D-C: Isabella Struck (unassisted).
GOALIE SAVES/SHOTS – L/D-C: Kira Kuechle 34/43 … M-W/SWC: Ashlyn Roth 10/12

Chisago Lakes 6, River Lakes 0

Chisago Lakes improved to 12-10 with the victory over River Lakes at the Koronis Civic Arena in Paynesville.

River Lakes’ record is now 7-13-1. The Stars play Alexandria at 7:15 p.m. Monday at the Runestone Community Center in Alex.

Michael Lyne joined the West Central Tribune as a sports reporter in May 2022, following his graduation from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, where he graduated with a bachelors degree in journalism and a minor degree in Spanish studies.

You may reach Michael at, or by calling (320) 214-4345.
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