Athletes of the week: Game-winners keep coming for Irondale's Hanson

  • Updated: February 19, 2013 - 1:05 AM

Sena Hanson, Irondale girls' hockey

SENA HANSON

Irondale, hockey

Scoring one game-winning, season-saving goal is more than most hockey players accomplish in a career.

Scoring two -- in back-to-back games in the same week, no less -- rarely happens, outside of driveways and backyard rinks.

But that's what Hanson, a freshman left winger, did last week.

Last Tuesday, she flipped in the game-winner with one second left in overtime in a 6-5 victory over Centennial in the Class 2A, Section 5 semifinals.

"That made me feel a lot better," Hanson said. "I got the penalty that let [Centennial] get the tying goal. Samantha Donovan drew the puck back to me and there was no one there. I just shot it and it trickled in."

Then last Friday, Hanson scored an even bigger goal. With 18 seconds left in the section championship game against top-seeded Mounds View, she stole the puck from a defenseman and wristed a shot into the upper corner. The goal broke a 1-1 tie and sent the Knights to the Class 2A tournament for the third time in team history.

While thrilled and still a little stunned by her clutch goals, Hanson made a point of crediting her linemates, Donovan and Alex Toupal, for her success.

"I think it just started sinking in," she said. "But it's because I play with two great players on my line. They're always covered, so I just get open a lot."

JAKOB ELLINGSON

Hopkins, Nordic skiing

The senior took a big lead in the freestyle portion of the Nordic ski race in last week's state meet at Giants Ridge in Biwabik, then held off a charge by Eden Prairie's Tom Bye in the Classic race to win the boys' individual state championship with an overall time of 29:24.4.

SHANE GERSICH

Holy Family, hockey

Considered one of Minnesota's best sophomore players, Gersich scored nine goals in three games last week. He scored once in a 5-4 loss to Breck and had back-to-back four-goal efforts in victories over Orono and Litchfield/Dassel-Cokato.

ELIZABETH KOPRUCKI

East Ridge, Alpine skiing

After finishing second in the 2012 Alpine state meet, Koprucki turned in the two fastest slalom runs of the day en route to a meet-winning combined time of 1:15.52. Her time was more than 1.5 seconds ahead of the runner-up.

ALEX LAMERE

North Wright County, hockey

The junior goalie stopped all 62 shots she faced in victories over Bemidji (3-0) and Moorhead (4-0) in last week's Class 2A, Section 8 playoffs, leading the River Hawks to their second state tournament in three years.

ISIS MULLER

Roseville, gymnastics

The sophomore peaked when she scored a 37.875 to win the all-around championship at the Class 2A, Section 5 meet. Muller won the uneven bars and helped the No. 1-ranked Raiders to a season-high team score of 150.95.

MICHAEL MURRAY

Jefferson, Alpine skiing

In his fifth state meet appearance, the senior, finally achieved his goal of winning the Alpine skiing individual state championship. His two-run combined time was 1:13.67.

JIM PAULSEN

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  • Isis Muller, Roseville gymnastics

  • Michael Murray, Bloomington Jefferson boys' Alpine skiing

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