Red Wing goalie shows poise under pressure at state tournament

ST. PAUL— Ashley Corcoran didn't let nerves get to her in her first start on the state's biggest stage.

The sophomore goalie from Red Wing was the most poised player on the ice for a majority of the Wingers' 6-2 Class A state quarterfinal victory against Alexandria on Wednesday at the Xcel Energy Center.

Red Wing will play in a state semifinal game at 11 a.m. Friday at the Xcel Center.

"It's a huge arena," Corcoran said when asked what it was like to play in the Xcel Center for the first time. "There were a few nerves before the game, but I was fine once we got going."

Wingers coach Scott Haley didn't fault Corcoran for either of the goals Alexandria scored. Corcoran, who finished with 25 saves, surrendered one goal after a defensive breakdown by the Wingers and allowed another on a rebound that wasn't cleared.


"She's been terrific," Haley said. "She's put up the best statistics we've had from a goalie (a 1.77 goals-against average and a .936 save percentage). She allows us to play a style that's more aggressive than we otherwise would play."

Corcoran doesn't always receive the attention that the Wingers' high-scoring first forward line does (junior Nicole Schammel scored four of the Wingers' six goals), or the attention that defenesman and Miss Hockey finalist Paige Haley does. But the young goalie deserved credit for preserving the Wingers' two-goal lead in a second period when Alexandria outshot them, 14-11.

"That's how she plays," coach Haley said, "just a quiet 93-94 save percentage. It's just really nice to have that. She wasn't battling the puck at all today and she makes the first save every time."

Corcoran deflected the credit to her teammates.

"We knew we all just had to play really strong," she said. "Everyone did that. We just had to do whatever it took to keep the puck out of the net and everyone did their jobs."

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