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Goal-scoring Gobel, Rebels on a roll

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MOOSE LAKE—Preparing for last Thursday’s girls hockey game against rival Proctor-Hermantown, Moose Lake eighth-grader Asia Gobel admitted she was nervous.

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Four goals later, the 13-year-old was celebrating victory.

Gobel’s quartet of scores was a record night for Moose Lake Area’s right winger, as the red-hot Rebels edged the Mirage 6-4 last week at Riverside Arena in Moose Lake.

Gobel, in her first year of varsity hockey, said after last Friday’s practice that she has had multi-goal games as a youth, but nothing like last week when the right-handed shooter scored twice in the first period and added two more in the third during a Section 7A game in which her team never trailed.

“I just told myself to play my game,” said Gobel of the puck-controlling, up-the-ice-quickly style she’s developed since first playing hockey at age 3. “We all just stepped up. This is always a big game for us. We really wanted to win.”

Winning is something the Rebels (14-8-2) have done a lot of since Christmas. Over that time, MLA has been victorious in eight of its 11 contests, including last week’s upset of likely section top seed Proctor-Hermantown, avenging a 5-3 setback at Proctor during just the second game of this season.

Unlike their mid-November meeting with the Mirage, the Rebels set the tone last week with three goals in the first 17 minutes and fended off a third-period rally with three more.

Coach Joe Mohelsky, in his eighth year, said the win — the cooperative team’s 14th of the season — was historic.

“We’ve won more games than any other team in Moose Lake history,” Mohelsky said. “Since I started coaching here we’ve been building this up.”

In terms of points, the Rebels team is lead by Barnum twin sisters, Jessica and Jamie Bird, as the freshmen pair from Barnum has combined for 24 goals and 33 assists. Captain left-winger Andrea Youngberg, Gobel and assistant captain center Karina Cisar have 14, 14 and 12 goals, respectively, to aid goalie Cassie White’s 1,074 minutes in net.

“We’re just playing as a team,” said Cisar, a Moose Lake junior who scored the two other goals last week. “We’re a small team, but you can’t take us lightly.”

Mohelsky agreed, noting the six-team Section 7A postseason is up in the air in the coming weeks. He said if his team plays well, MLA “absolutely” could qualify for State.

“It wouldn’t [only] mean so much to me and the girls, but to all of the people that support us,” Mohelsky said of a first section title. “And all of the girls who have played here in the past.”

“It’s usually been tape to tape,” said Youngberg, a Moose Lake senior, of their stick-to-stick unity. “We feel real good.”