Blaine dominates Roseau 7-1 to advance to state semifinals

Sports Reporter
Sam is the sports reporter for ABC Newspapers, covering high school, junior college and community sports in the area. He joined the staff in October 2016.
Emily Brown (5) and Jaela O'Brien made it tough for Roseau to get anything going offensively as the Bengals won 7-1 in the first round of the Class AA state tournament. The Bengals have allowed just one goal this postseason. (Photo by Sam Herder)
Emily Brown (5) and Jaela O’Brien made it tough for Roseau to get anything going offensively as Blaine won 7-1 in the first round of the Class AA state tournament. The Bengals have allowed just one goal this postseason. (Photo by Sam Herder)

The Blaine girls hockey team has had no problem getting points this season. To get to where they wanted to be, though, the Bengals needed a goaltender to take their game to the next level. Jaela O’Brien and Morgan Cin split time during the regular season, but it was O’Brien who got the nod down the stretch and into the postseason.

The result has been two shutouts in the section playoffs and holding Roseau to zero goals in 35:44 of play in the first round of the Class AA state tournament Thursday at the Xcel Energy Center. Blaine, seeded No. 2, took care of the unseeded Rams 7-1 to advance to the semifinals at 6 p.m. Friday against third-seeded Hill-Murray, who beat Eastview 4-1.

“She’s been great lately,” Blaine head coach Steve Guider said on O’Brien. “We had a bit of a struggle most of the season with our goaltending. It sounds weird that we struggled because we only gave up about 25 goal during the regular season, but we played very good team defense in front. We had conversations with our goalies because the goals we gave up were preventable.. We talked to them at the beginning of the season and said whoever rises to the occasion at the end is going to get the run. She’s been very good as of late.”

 

Offensively, the Bengals did their thing from the start. Abby Jones got the scoring going for the Bengals less than two minutes into the game, beating the goalie one-on-one with the assist from DeAnna LeMire and Megan McKenzie.

Sarah Ganley extended the lead to 2-0 four minutes later, assisted by Courtney Moser.

“We were happy with the start,” Guider said. “I thought we had good energy and played really hard. Once we got that lead, though, we started to get sloppy at the end of the period. The start was good, but we weren’t very happy with the finish and that’s what we addressed in between periods.”

Gabby Rosenthal got in on the action with a goal in the first and second period. Kenzie Wylie picked up an assist on both goals with Paige Beebe helping out on the first and Ramsey Parent on the second.

“It was pretty awesome, it’s the state tournament so everyone would like to score,” Rosenthal said. “Our team played really well and I was lucky enough to get a nice pass to get an easy shot off.”

Wylie tallied her third assist with the help from Moser on an Emily Brown goal with less than four minutes to play in the second period.

Up 5-0 heading into the third, Beebe gave the Bengals even more breathing room with an unassisted goal 13 seconds in. She added one more, assisted by Brown, 12 minutes later.

“We’ve been here before so we kind of knew what to expect,” Beebe said. “Coming out hard right away is our biggest goal at the beginning, so that was a plus. ”

Roseau’s lone goal came with 1:35 remaining in the game.

Blaine out-shot the Rams 37-15. O’Brien recorded 13 saves and Cin added one in the last 15:16 of the game.

“They have so much depth,” Roseau head coach Steve Huglen said. “They keep coming after you and are also tough defensively.”

In the other semifinal game, top seed Edina plays fourth-seeded Eden Prairie after Blaine’s game.

(Photos by Sam Herder)
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(Photos by Sam Herder)

First report

The No. 2 Blaine girls hockey team took care of business early in the first round of the Class AA state tournament, defeating unseeded Roseau 7-1 Thursday at the Xcel Energy Center.

Blaine advances to the semifinals at 6 p.m. Friday against third-seeded Hill-Murray, who beat Eastview 4-1.

Abby Jones got the scoring started for the Bengals less than two minutes into the game, beating the goalie one-on-one with the assist from DeAnna LeMire and Megan McKenzie.

Sarah Ganley extended the lead to 2-0 four minutes later, assisted by Courtney Moser.

Gabby Rosenthal got in on the action with a goal in the first and second period. Kenzie Wylie picked up an assist on both goals with Paige Beebe helping out on the first and Ramsey Parent on the second.

Wylie tallied her third assist with the help from Moser on an Emily Brown goal with less than four minutes to play in the second period.

Up 5-0 heading into the third, Beebe gave the Bengals even more breathing room with an unassisted goal 13 seconds in. She added one more, assisted by Brown, 12 minutes later.

Roseau’s lone goal came with 1:35 remaining in the game.

Blaine out-shot the Rams 37-15. Jaela O’Brien got the win in the net for the Bengals, recording 13 saves.