Molly Pohlkamp scored the game-winning goal for Brainerd/Little Falls with 4:55 left in the third period to give the Warriors a 2-1 Central Lakes Conference against the Sartell/Sauk Rapids Storm’N’Sabres Tuesday, Nov. 23, at Essentia Health Sports Center.
“I just kind of turned and sniped it,” Pohlkamp said. “I think it reflected off one of my teammates, but overall we were just so excited.”
The Warriors outshot the Storm’N’Sabres 44-16 with SSR goalie Morgan Dorn notching 42 saves to keep the BLF offense at bay.
“Their goalie did a good job and I think our girls did a poor job of getting good, quality shots on goal,” Warriors head coach Tate Rusk said. “I told our defense a couple of times to make sure we get our good shots through and also told them to get the shots down. We put a lot of shots in (Dorn’s) glove and she had a good glove.”
Pohlkamp said it was frustrating going up against a goalie that’s on fire like Dorn was Tuesday.
“Our team was really good at picking each other up and our coaches are just really positive,” Pohlkamp said.
Rusk said before the game-winner by Pohlkamp in the third period he was telling his team someone needed to step up.
“I just kept saying, ‘Someone has to do it,’” he said. “That line has been a great line for us — all three lines have been great. It’s good to see a hard worker like Molly Pohlkamp get rewarded like that.”
SSR struck first in the second period at the 10:10 mark. Chloe Reiter put the Storm’N’Sabres up 1-0 on assists from Megan Hess and Olivia Schlecht.
It was SSR’s first goal of the season as they had been outscored 17-0 in their three games prior to the matchup with BLF.
The Warriors responded with 2:06 left in the second period to tie the game 1-1.
Freshman Kristina Baillif found the net off assists from Peyton LeMieur and Brynne Folden to give the Warriors a little boost headed into the intermission.
“It was an absolutely huge goal,” Rusk said. “That was something I was talking with the assistant coaches about. We had to get the next goal, otherwise it could be an interesting game.”
Rusk said he told his team in the second intermission to get out of a tight game situation.
“They responded pretty well there in the third,” he said. “I’m happy with getting the W, but there are still a lot of things we need to work on.”
The win snaps a two-game losing streak for the Warriors..
“I told the girls coming off those two losses to Rogers and Minnetonka to just come out and get the wagon back on the road, and let’s make a statement in this conference game,” Rusk said. “Now, do we take the win? Yes. But did we make a statement? No. And our girls know that and it’s good that they understand that. They were getting frustrated tonight and I just told them after two periods that you can’t get frustrated, but we have to start getting pucks on net.”
BLF now goes into a nine-day break before its next game Dec. 2 against River Lakes.
“Thanksgiving break is always tough,” Rusk said. “We want the girls to spend time with their family and enjoy that away from the rink time. We just want to make sure our girls stay healthy and have no positive (COVID-19) cases. We will have a light skate tomorrow then two days off before getting right back at it.”
Sartell/Sauk Rapids 0 1 0 — 1
Brainerd/LF 0 1 1 — 2
Second period: Chloe Reiter (Megan Hess, Olivia Schlecht) 10:10, Brd-Kristina Baillif (Peyton LeMieur, Brynne Folden) 14:54
Third period: Brd-Molly Pohlkamp (Avery LeMieur, Molly Hagelie) 12:05
Shots on goal: BLF 16-12-16 44, SSR 6-7-3 16
Goalies: BLF-Breya Sawyer (15 saves); SSR-Morgan Dorn (42 saves)
Warriors 2, Sartell/Sauk Rapids 1
Key: Molly Pohlkamp’s goal with 4:55 left lifts Warriors over Storm’N’Sabres.
Conference: BLF 1-0, SSR 0-1.
Overall: BLF 3-2, SSR 0-4.
Next: BLF hosts River Lakes 7:15 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 2.
CONRAD ENGSTROM may be reached at 218-855-5861 or email@example.com. Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/the_rad34.