CEC boys go for a tournament hat trick
The Cloquet-Esko-Carlton boys hockey team narrowly missed a third consecutive championship in the Heritage Hockey Tournament in Duluth on Saturday, dropping a 3-2 decision to Rosemount in the championship game.
The ’Jacks (4-7-1) spotted the Irish a 3-0 lead in the first period of the title game before coming back with goals from Hunter Roberts and Kyle Klatt to close to within 3-2 after two periods. Despite holding Rosemount to 10 shots on goal over the last two periods, CEC could not find a tying goal.
The ’Jacks opened the tournament by blitzing St. Louis Park 9-2 in the opening game, scoring three goals in each period and outshooting the Orioles 51-10. Klatt and Ryan Lind each had a goal and three assists while Roberts and Koby Bender each scored a pair of goals. Dylan Johnson, James Newgren and Jack Kuhlman also scored for the ’Jacks, who got eight saves from Zack Strom in goal.
The semifinals saw CEC get a 17-save shutout from Strom in defeating Bemidji 3-0. CEC took a 2-0 first period lead on a power play goal by Derek Bloom, with Bender following with an even strength goal 35 seconds later. Roberts added a goal at 12:13 of the second period for the final margin of 3-0.
CEC is at Grand Rapids on Thursday night and at St. Francis on Saturday.
GIRLS HOCKEY ROUNDUP
The CEC girls (3-8-2) got untracked last weekend at the Cardinal Cup tournament in Coon Rapids, winning twice and tying once to take third place.
In the Thursday opener, the ’Jacks got 24 saves from Stacy Nelson in goal to beat North St. Paul 3-1. Rachael Macaulay, Jade Alvillar and Mikayla Baker scored for CEC, which got a goal in each period.
On Friday, CEC skated to a 3-3 tie with Totino-Grace but lost in a shootout in a game that is officially counted as a tie. Macaulay, Baker and Kailey Buhr helped the ’Jacks take a 3-1 lead after two periods, but the Eagles tied the game with two goals in the third period. Nelson stopped 25 of 28 shots in regulation time in goal.
Saturday’s third-place game saw CEC lead wire-to-wire in a 4-2 win over Owatonna. Makayla Langenbrunner and Buhr staked the ’Jacks to a 2-0 first-period lead and after the Huskies cut the lead to 2-1 after two periods, Baker and Buhr made it 4-1 in the third, with Baker’s goal coming only five seconds after the period start.
The teams combined for only 25 shots on goal in the game, with CEC having 14. Nelson made nine saves in goal for the win. CEC hosts the Duluth Northern Stars on Saturday night.
Moose Lake Area’s girls (6-5-2) did not play in a holiday tournament last weekend, with their most recent game a 9-3 win over Superior on Dec. 21. The team is led in scoring by Jessica Bird (12 goals, 13 assists, 25 points) and Andrea Youngberg (8 goals, 9 assists, 17 points), but is scheduled for three games at the Schwan’s Super Rink in Blaine this week starting with a 2:30 p.m. game Monday against East Ridge.