Girls Hockey: Blaine Blows out Stillwater 6-0


Jon Ababiy, Sports Editor


The Blaine Bengals came back to form Thursday night against the Stillwater Ponies. They dominated the puck all game and put 6 goals on the hustled Stillwater defense. Junior Bemidji State commit Paige Beebe and sophomore Gabby Rosenthal dominated and had a goal and assist each.

The first period was an uneventful one. Beebe started to get some shots and even a breakaway early in the game, but couldn’t get anything on the board. A Stillwater player missed a shot on an open net, which would end up being the peak of the Ponies’ offensive output in the game.

Bengal junior Kirstie Ziegler went to the box for the hooking with 7 to play. The Bengals easily killed off the powerplay.

The second period was when the Bengals really started to going. Sophomore Abby Jones scored a backhand goal off a pass from sophomore Deanna Lemire to put the Bengals ahead just two and a half minutes in.

Bengal junior Gina Rosvold went to the box and gave Stillwater the powerplay opportunity. One of the Bengal defenseman routinely dumped the puck into the Ponies’ end to try to kill powerplay, while Bengal forward Gabby Rosenthal sped into the corner, trying to get there before the Stillwater defense could. She managed to get possession and dished the puck from the corner to the waiting Beebe who easily tapped it backdoor, extending the Bengal lead to two goals.

The Bengal defense started dominating in the second period, where the first period was mostly even. They were excellent in the neutral zone, making sure to stop any Stillwater chances early. The Bengals showed their quickness and strength, beating Stillwater players on loose pucks time after time.

After an absence where she won the gold medal at the IIHF World Women’s U18 Championships for Team USA, Bengal junior Emily Brown made her presence felt on Thursdays game against the Ponies. The Bengals struggled while she was gone, but it seems like things are back to normal. She epitomized her presence when, after missing a shot that she should have easily buried, she shot a laser into the net, knocking the water bottle off the top of the net.

With five minutes left in the period, Rosvold went to the box again. The Blaine powerkill performed well and killed the powerplay with no harm done.  The Ponies appeared to score in the last minute of the period, but the goal was waved off.

Shots were 18-12 at the end of the second period.

The Bengals repeated what the did the second period, and again scored early into the period. Freshman Ramsey Parent hit a one timer from a nice Beebe pass. The Bengals were starting to pull away, and showed that their quickness could wear out the Ponies.

Blaine junior Sarah Ganley added another goal to the Bengal’s lead to make it 5-0 with 10:02 to play. Junior linemate Courtney Moser had the assist.

After Rosvold was pushed down near the boards by a Stillwater player, she got up, but was immediately pushed down again by the same waiting Stillwater player. It all unfolded a couple feet from the ref, who made the easy call and sent the Stillwater player to the box for roughing.

Just seconds into the powerplay, Parent chipped the puck behind the goalie to add the clinching powerplay goal at the 7:54 mark. She was assisted by Rosenthal and Beebe.

The Stillwater players seemed to be a little fed up and started to get physical. The Bengals ignored it all and put the game into cruise control to wrap it up. Even as the Bengals effort gradually declined at the end of the game, the Ponies could not get anything into the Bengal zone.

Blaine junior Morgan Cin had a great night. She made 18 saves, making this her 5th shutout of the year. Blaine had a tight defense throughout the game, but Cin made sure any Stillwater players that squeezed through didn’t score.

This game showed what the Bengals could do when they were firing on all cylinders. The Bengals are now 19-3 this season, with the three losses coming from Centennial twice and Maple Grove once, two teams that are in their section. If the Bengals play like this come sections, a second straight State Tournament is not unlikely. The key now is to see how they play against other top-10 teams in the state.

The Bengals play Anoka on Saturday at Fogerty Arena. They defeated Anoka 4-1 last time out, so the Bengals should be able to secure a 20 win season.