After pretty much playing a dominate game, the Crookston Pirates did everything but score multiple goals and ended up losing when the Grand Forks KnightRiders scored on their only power play chance of the game with just over two minutes to go in the game and made it stand up to a 2-1 victory on the road in Crookston. “We have trouble scoring and couldn’t get the puck to go in on great scoring chances too,” said Crookston head girl’s hockey coach Tim Moe.
An inkling of what kind of game it was going to be with Crookston dominating the play and playing most of the period in the Grand Forks end. Crookston had sequences where they had sharp passing, terrific work along the boards and their defensemen not giving up the blue line. But, were unable to put anything past the Grand Forks sophomore goalie Kaylee Baker. 10 days ago when Grand Forks was in Crookston for the first meeting, Baker had 29 saves in a 5-2 win where Crookston outshot the KnightRiders 31-21. “She is a very good goalie,” said Moe, “she is good size for a sophomore and takes up a lot of room in goal and moves well and there isn’t much room to score on her. I guess she didn’t make All-State but certainly has to be one of the top goalies in North Dakota.” Crookston had two power play chances in the period but despite some nice passing and holding the zone went 0-2 with the man advantage.
Grand Forks took their third penalty of the game to start the period and Crookston would pretty much control the puck for the two minutes, coming close, but not scoring. Addie Fee was seven feet to the right of the Grand Forks goal and appeared to have an open net and fired a shot that struck the cross bar solidly but did not go in. “That was a great chance for Addie,” said Moe, “I was all ready to holler at the referee to get the puck because it would have been her first goal.” A bit later, Crookston senior captain Nora Peterson, who is from Mayville, N.D. and plays for the Pirates, was alone in front in the deep slot and snapped a shot off that Baker made a brilliant glove save on. It was with 2:45 to go in the period and their second and third shots on goal in the game, Grand Forks on a two on one with Emily Becker passing to Norria Neubert whose shot was right on with Pirate goalie, also a sophomore, Kailee Magsam making a pad save with the rebound coming back to Becker who pounced on it and score the first goal of the game.”We got a little out of position and gave up the odd man rush,” said Moe and unfortunately they got a good bounce and able to score. It was tough to give up with the way we were playing!”
“We told the girl’s to keep doing what we’re doing, keep the forecheck like we have been doing and eventually we are going to score some goals,” said Moe between periods in the locker room. It was just over a minute in the final period when Crookston tied it up. Senior Catherine Tiedemann took a pass near center ice from her defenseman Morgan Nelson and Tiedemann rushed into the Grand Forks zone and snapped off a shot from the circle to the right of the KnightRider goalie and beat her to the stick side to tie the game at 1-1. “That was a timely goal,” said Moe, “it really fired up the bench and Catherine as well.” Because after she score her goal, Tiedemann was all over Grand Forks on the same shift, she had another breakaway in alone on Baker and went to the backhand and the KnightRider goalie poke checked the puck away. A few seconds later Tiedemann was inches from scoring her second goal. “We’ve been waiting for Catherine to break out and it is play like that that shows she can be dangerous,” said Moe. Grand Forks would take their fourth penalty of the game about half way through the period and Crookston again had some good puck movement and shots on goal, but their best chances never fully developed. If you are a fan in the stands, no matter what side, you know after Grand Forks has taken all the penalties, four of them, in the game, it’s pretty much a given that Crookston better be careful. With 3:44 to go in regulation, the Pirates were called for a tripping call that if you’re a Crookston fan, was a weak call, but never the less, Grand Forks had their first power play of the game. It took a minute and a half, but Grand Forks would take the lead gain with 2:16 left in the game when the KnightRiders defenseman Maya Tellmann gave a pass up ice to their leading scorer, Shaley Richards whose shot was on goal and a short rebound in front and Averi Greenwood was able to get to it and knock it in to give Grand Forks a 2-1 lead. Crookston would eventually pull their goalie with 35 seconds left but were unable to get the equalizer and suffered a tough loss after outshooting Grand Forks 39-7 in the game. “We need to get more traffic in front of the opponents net,” said Tim Moe, “and we have to get stronger, which has been a problem in getting to the weights in this pandemic. This summer we weren’t able to and it’s been tough during the season as well.” Crookston rolled four lines throughout the game and six defensemen as the entire roster played. “Our game plan going in was to rotate the fourth line here and there,” said Moe, then as the game went on those kids were doing a fantastic job and Grand Forks couldn’t get the puck out of their zone against them. I also liked our defense, giving up seven shots on goal to a team of Grand Forks caliber. We will get back at it Monday and get ready for what next week brings us.”
Crookston is 4-7-1 on the year and will be at Bemidji on Tuesday and at Northern Lakes (Pequot Lakes) on Friday. Grand Forks is 14-8 on the season and this was their last regular season game. They are a fourth seed as they get ready for the North Dakota State Tournament next week.
2:45 – GF – Emily Becker (Narria Neubert)
15:54 – Crox – Catherine Tiedemann (3) (Morgan Nelson)
2:16 – GF – Averi Greenwood (Shaley Richards, Maya Tellmann) (PP)