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Girls hockey: Trojans show some offense in season opener

Kya Nickel of the Worthington Trojans girls hockey team is congratulated by teammates after scoring a goal Tuesday in the team's first game of the season against Mankato West. (Aaron Hagen/The Globe)1 / 2
Worthington's Ashton Fogelman skates over the ice with the puck Tuesday in girls hockey action. (Aaron Hagen/The Globe)2 / 2

WORTHINGTON -- It didn’t take Ashton Fogelman long to make an impact during her first year on varsity.

The freshman forward scored a goal in her first varsity game Tuesday night for the Worthington girls hockey team.

“I just kept pushing and pushing and I was just hoping that I could get something going,” Fogelman said. “I wish there was more time. As soon as I got it in, I just felt this relief. It was really good because I was like, ‘What if I don’t score, what is going on?’ But as soon as I got that in, I was like, ‘I can do this.’”

Not only was it her first varsity goal, but it was short-handed.

“She definitely earned it,” WHS head coach Chad Nickel said. “She had a lot of failed attempts and finally pushed through and got down there and got it done.”

The Worthington offense showed much improvement from a year ago, but Mankato West was victorious Tuesday, 10-2.

“The score didn’t reflect it, but we are making improvements,” Nickel said. “We have a little more of the physical game down, we just need to keep working on the mental part of the game. We got two goals right on the first game of the year, so we’ve already improved. Goals against didn’t necessarily show that, but we’re improving.”

The main thorn in the side of the Trojan defense was West senior Courtney Bloemke. She had a first-period hat trick and added her fourth goal in the third period. She also had two assists.

“She pretty much controlled the game last year the same she did this year,” Nickel said. “We’re not mentally able to keep up with her game yet.”

The Trojans managed 20 shots on goal in the game.

“There was some potential. They are starting to pick up the game,” Nickel said. “We’re finally coming. We’re making the improvements, we just have to keep working.”

But it took until the second period to get on the board.

“The first period we were just getting into it because it was our first game,” Fogelman said. “But then as it went along, we kind of started like, ‘This is our ice, we can do this.’”

With WHS on a power play, Delayne Kuhl made a nice pass to Kya Nickel, who beat the Scarlet defense for the Trojans’ first goal of the season. That made the score 3-1 early in the second period.

However, MW scored the next six goals to lead 9-1.

“I feel like as soon as they were going to push toward us, that we kind of panicked a little,” Fogelman said. “Those times where we had long periods of time where we could think, then we got some things going. But hopefully, defensively along the road we can get a lot better about that.”

With the Scarlets on a power play, Fogelman stole the puck, got out on a breakaway and put in her first varsity goal.

Worthington is home again on Friday against Waseca.

“We’re probably going to work on a lot of in front of the net because when they were in front of the net, they really got a lot of opportunities,” Fogelman said. “I hope that we can work on getting it outside. Also breaking out of the zone to get in the offensive zone, we can work on that a little bit.”

Mankato West 3 3 4 -- 10Worthington 0 1 1 -- 2Luverne 4, Albert Lea 1

LUVERNE -- Reghan Bork scored three goal as Luverne defeated Albert Lea.

Regan Feit added a goal, and Lexi Henrichs added two assists for the Cardinals.

Feit scored the game’s first goal on a power play. Henrichs had the assist.

After Albert Lea evened the score at 1-all in the first period, LHS scored twice in the second. Bork started the scoring with an assist from Claire Baustian and Henrichs before she added her second five minutes later. Her third goal came in the third period unassisted.

Emilie Bartels made 22 saves in net for Luverne.  

Albert Lea 1 0 0 -- 1Luverne 1 2 1 -- 4
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