Eden Prairie senior forward Jack Jensen could feel his legs giving out with each passing shift in the Eagles' triple-overtime game with Lakeville South.
But he wasn't about to quit. Neither was Lakeville South senior goalie Henry Welsch.
Jensen's goal with 57 seconds left in the sixth period secured a 3-2 victory for Eden Prairie on Thursday at Xcel Energy Center. Welsch stopped 63 shots for the Cougars, two shy of the tournament record.
"Sixty-six shots — their goalie played unbelievable," Jensen said. "To finally get one past him was a relief."
Jensen's goal ended the first triple overtime game since the 2011 championship game, also won by Eden Prairie.
The Class 2A quarterfinal game started with senior defenseman Clayton Shultz scoring his first goal of the season to give No. 3 seed Eden Prairie (18-9-2) a 1-0 lead just 1:49 into the first period.
Sophomores Carter Batchelder and Drew Holt combined to double the lead with a slick Holt finish of a Batchelder pass. And Eden Prairie led 2-0 at the first intermission.
But Lakeville South (14-13-1) wasn't intimidated. Griffin Ludtke brought his team within one with a goal at 14:50 of the second period. Then less than a minute into the third period, Jack Novak drew the Cougars even at 2-2.
As the overtimes wore on, the Minnesota State High School League announced the game would be halted after three overtimes and resumed at 8 a.m. Friday so that quarterfinal games scheduled for Thursday evening could start on time.
"Thank goodness Jack found the net," Eden Prairie coach Lee Smith said.
DAVID LA VAQUE