Scoring two goals in the opening five minutes helped propel Blaine to a 3-0 victory over Maple Grove to win the Class 2A, Section 5 championship Friday at Roseville Ice Arena.
"That's a great team that we beat," said coach Steve Guider, whose team advanced to the state tournament for the second time in three seasons. "To get three pucks past those goalies is impressive."
Ramsey Parent scored first, 3 minutes, 22 seconds into the game, as she fought her way to the net and poked in the puck. Paige Beebe followed with another goal 91 seconds later. Maple Grove pulled goaltender Breanna Blesi and replaced her with Coco Francis.
"We knew we needed to capitalize on all chances," Parent said. "I knew my goal wasn't going to be pretty."
Beebe tallied an assist on Parent's goal while Parent and Kenzie Wylie assisted Beebe on her goal.
Abby Jones extended the Bengals' lead to 3-0 with 1:44 left in the second period with an assist from DeAnna LeMire. The Crimson had multiple chances in the second but was unable to capitalize.
Jaela O'Brien recored the shutout for Blaine.
"Defense-wise, I thought we played well, but our goaltender was exceptional tonight," Guider said. "That's the best game she's played. She was very, very poised and relaxed."
Mike Hendrickson is a University of Minnesota student reporter on
assignment for the Star Tribune.