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Boys hockey: Frantic finish comes up short for Trojans

WORTHINGTON -- It was wild and frantic near the conclusion of Worthington's boys hockey matchup with visiting Dodge County Saturday afternoon. The Trojans, trailing by one goal, had a man advantage for two minutes starting with 2:15 remaining. Bu...

3968638+whw Boys Hockey vs Dodge County web.jpg
Worthington Trojans goalie Preston Thavixay (30) blocks a shot from Dodge County Wildcat Isaiah Jensen (2) Saturday in Worthington. (Tim Middagh/The Globe)

 

WORTHINGTON -- It was wild and frantic near the conclusion of Worthington’s boys hockey matchup with visiting Dodge County Saturday afternoon.

The Trojans, trailing by one goal, had a man advantage for two minutes starting with 2:15 remaining. But they couldn’t get the game-tying goal, Dodge County slipped in a long goal into an empty net with 19.9 seconds to go, and won a tough 5-3 victory.

Dodge County had to come from behind to get the win. The host Trojans withstood the Wildcats’ physical style of play in the first period to outscore them 2-0. But the tide turned in the second period. Dodge County outscored the Trojans 4-0 and were able to hold on.

“They came out with a lot more intensity in the second period,” said WHS assistant coach Tyler Nienkerk. “They’re a very fast, physical, good team. And that’s the brand of hockey up north. That’s the way they play.”

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The game began with the puck steadily at Worthington’s end of the ice, but the Trojans got a goal from Lance Hibma at the 12:02 mark -- assisted by Krew Aljets -- for a 1-0 lead. Another goal turned in by Anthony Fogelman, with another Aljets assist, made the score 2-0.

Fogelman’s goal was pretty. He skated with it nearly the length of the ice, weaved in and around defenders, and shot it from the left side of the net about 30 feet away to find his mark.

Twice late in the first period, Worthington went a player down after being called for two-minute penalties for roughing and slashing, respectively. But WHS goalkeeper Preston Thavixay stayed tough in net and refused to let a goal pass.

The second period, however, was different. Dodge County recorded goals by Peyton Johnson and Adam Colvin, then two by Marcus Hadrath, to assume a 4-2 lead.

Thavixay was stubborn in goal early in the third period when the Wildcats came out punching. Then with 11:26 on the game clock, Hibma scored his second goal of the game on a sharp 15-foot shot that found the upper left corner of Dodge County’s net. Fogelman was credited with an assist.

That set up a furious finish as the Trojans tried to get the game-tying goal. Dodge County’s Thomas Hamlin did penalty time with 2:15 remaining for roughing, giving the home team a one-player advantage. The Wildcats hung tight, however, then and after the Trojans emptied their net.

Dodge County put 44 shots on goal Saturday, compared with 15 shots for Worthington.

Nienkerk said the Trojans played well generally, but they needed to play a little more under control near the finish.

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“That’s the way it is sometimes -- frantic at the end. It’s just to try to find a way to slow it down and control the puck,” he said.

Head coach Paul Olsen agreed that the Trojans played well in the losing cause.

“We let them into our heads,” he said about the second period, adding, “That’s the way it’s gone for us sometimes. Credit to (Dodge County), they’ve got some pretty fast skaters.”

The loss moved WHS to 2-18 on the season.

Dodge County 0 4 1 -- 5

Worthington 2 0 1 -- 3

 

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Worthington's Eric Heidebrink (28) steals the puck away from Dodge County's Logan Gauthier (8). (Tim Middagh/The Globe)

Related Topics: BOYS HOCKEY
Doug Wolter joined the Worthington Globe in December of 1983 as a sports reporter. He later became sports editor, and then news editor and managing editor. In 2006 he moved to Mankato with his wife, Sandy, and served as an editor at the Mankato Free Press. In 2013 he and Sandy returned to Worthington to take up the job of sports editor at The Globe, and they have been in Worthington since.

Doug can be reached at dwolter@dglobe.com.
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