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Prep boys hockey: Worthington not sharp in loss

WORTHINGTON -- For the second time this week, penalties killed Worthington.Or, to be more specific, it was the lack of a penalty kill.Breckenridge/Wahpeton scored on four of five power play opportunities on its way to a 7-1 nonconference victory ...

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TIM MIDDAGH/DAILY GLOBE Worthington’s Ryan Newman (11) puts pressure on Breckenridge/Wahpeton goalkeeper Tucker Barth in Friday’s game at the Worthington Arena.

WORTHINGTON - For the second time this week, penalties killed Worthington.
Or, to be more specific, it was the lack of a penalty kill.
Breckenridge/Wahpeton scored on four of five power play opportunities on its way to a 7-1 nonconference victory over the Trojans. That was just three nights after Waseca scored three goals during a five-minute major and handed Worthington a 9-6 loss.
“That’s what happens when you take a team lightly,” Trojans’ assistant coach Brad Foss said. “I think we thought we had this game won before we took the ice. We’ve gotta play our game and we can’t play down to their level. But, give them all the credit in the world. They came all the way down here with a bunch of JV guys and bantams and they won every battle to the puck.”
On Foss’ point about taking the Blades lightly, they came in with a roster that is even more youthful than that of the Trojans. After playing well against the Bluejays Tuesday, Foss said they got overconfident when looking ahead to Friday’s matchup. To make matters worse, they had more time than originally planned to think about the upcoming triumph.
The game started a half-hour later than its originally scheduled start time because the Blades’ bus was in a wreck on its way to pick up the team. The extra time might have allowed for even more confidence to build.
“I wish we would have known nothing about them,” Foss said. “Being up by Fargo, I wish we would have thought they were going to be a tough matchup. We should have had that drilled into their heads. I think the guys came in way too confident.”
B/W came out firing with six shots on goal in the first two minutes, all of which were stopped by Trojan goalie Gage Langerud. Worthington didn’t test Blades’ goalie Tucker Barth until 4:01 had ticked off the clock, and Jordan Jensen made it count.
He took the puck at the blue line in his own zone and broke free down the left side. In a one-on-one situation, a flick of the wrist popped the puck over Barth’s glove and into the net to put the home team on top 1-0.
The lead didn’t last long. A tripping call on the Trojans gave B/W its second power play of the contest with less than six minutes gone by. Just 13 seconds into the advantage, Elijah Hanson scored to knot it up. Two minutes later, Tyler Wohlers punched in a rebound to put the Blades on top. Tyler Breuer added another from the point and the visitors led 3-1 at the first intermission.
“We played timid,” Foss said. “I think when they got that early lead, that was kind of a gut-check for us and we were playing catchup the rest of the way. We never got anything started.”
The score was 4-1 when Jensen almost notched his second goal of the night. He got loose down the center of the ice and tried to beat Barth to his left again. This time, the puck clanked hard off the pipe and Jensen was denied.
Eight seconds into another power play, Nolan Wamre scored for the Blades to put them on top 5-1 heading into the third. Karter Honius had one last good scoring chance for the Trojans early in the third, but Barth swallowed it up. Easton Erbes and Breuer added late power play goals for B/W to bring the game to its final.
Langerud stopped 32 of the 39 shots he faced while Barth was 14-of-15 on save opportunities. Worthington was able to get off some shots - including an Evan Eggers laser in the first - on its three power play chances, but came up empty each time.
The Trojans (0-8 overall, 0-6 Big South Conference) luckily won’t have much time to dwell on Friday’s loss. They’re back in action today at 3 p.m. against St. Peter/Le Sueur-Henderson/Tri-City United/Cleveland in Le Sueur. The Bulldogs won the first matchup between the two teams 8-0 on Nov. 28.
“We’ve got a long trip up to [Le Sueur] tomorrow,” Foss said. “Now is the time to redeem ourselves. This one’s going to eat at us the whole way up there. For a lot of these guys, it’s going to be what they want out of this season. There’s still time to turn it around, but they have to want it.”
B/W 3 2 2 - 7
WHS 1 0 0 - 1

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TIM MIDDAGH/DAILY GLOBE Worthington’s Andrew Olsen (18) congratulates teammate Jordan Jensen on scoring a goal Friday.

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