Austin girls get a conference win

Bashing out a win in a high-scoring game on Saturday afternoon finally snapped the Big Nine Conference losing streak for the Austin High girls hockey team.

Coming into the game against the Rochester Century Panthers, the Austin Packers were winless in their first five conference contests. That streak is now over for the Austin girls after a 9-5 win over Century at Riverside Arena.

Century (2-6, 1-5 Big Nine) scored the game's first goal in the opening two minutes. Ashley Arhart tied it for Austin about four minutes later with a short-handed goal.

Special teams goal would play a big part in this game. After the visitors took the lead back, Carley Grunewald scored a power play goal for the home team. Abby Gallaher then added a late goal to give the Packers a 3-2 lead after the first period.

"We played very poorly in the first and second periods," Austin coach Denny Bray said. "We didn't hustle and were lucky to score a few goals. It seems like in Saturday games, it takes us two periods to get going."


Despite their initial struggles, the Packers scored plenty of goals to cover up their mistakes on the ice. Grunewald and Gallaher each had a hat trick, while Kirsten Stanek tallied five points in the conference win.

Goals were scored in profusion by both teams in a wild second period. The two teams combined to score a total of seven goals in the second period.

"Penalty wise, it was ridiculous and a lot of girls spent time in the box," the coach said. "We scored three power play goals, three short-handed goals, and gave up three power play goals."

This meant a test from Austin's freshman goalie Allison Hoban. It was only a 7-5 lead after the second period, but Hoban answered the call defensively in the third period and pitched a shutout in net. This allowed the Packers to stretch their lead.

Stanek scored two goals in the second period with Grunewald and Gallaher each adding a goal. Grunewald and Gallaher then got their hat tricks as they each scored a goal in the third period for the final margin of victory.

"Hoban was in the net and after kind of struggling in the first and second periods, she got re-focused with a shutout in the third," Bray concluded. "We got the conference monkey off our back."

Austin (4-6, 1-5 Big Nine) plays host to the Faribault Falcons tomorrow night at Riverside Arena.





First period— RC, Jessica Aney (Katherine Aney), 1:53. Austin, Ashley Arhart (Kirsten Stanek), 5:11 (sh). RC, Madeline Eischen, 7:12. Austin, Carley Grunewald (Arhart, Abby Gallaher), 9:54 (pp). Austin, Gallaher, 12:49.

Second period— Austin, Grunewald (Arhart, Stanek), 1:58. RC, Alison Schulte (MaKenzie Birkestrand, McKenna Bridges), 4:13 (pp). Austin, Stanek (Arhart), 5:27 (pp). RC, Katherine Aney (Rebecca Lorsung, J.Aney), 8:00 (pp). Austin, Stanek (Vanessa Talamantes), 11:35 (sh). RC, Lorsung (Jessica Faunce, J.Aney), 14:12 (pp). Austin, Gallaher, 14:36.

Third period— Austin, Grunewald, 6:04 (sh). Austin, Gallaher (Stanek), 9:57 (pp).

Shots-on-goal— Century 7-18-8—23. Austin 10-11-14—35.

Goalies— Century, Hannah Kautto (35 shots, 26 saves). Austin, Allison Hoban (23 shots, 18 saves).

Penalties— Century 6-12, Austin 11-22.

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