East Grand Forks’ Nick Ranten pinned Thief River Falls’ Eli Olson against the boards behind the net as they competed for possession of the puck during Tuesday’s Section 8A boys high school hockey game at the Ralph Engelstad Arena. The Green Wave won 3-2.
East Grand Forks’ Tanner Tweten scored off a scramble to the side of the Thief River Falls net with 5:51 remaining to give the Green Wave a key 3-2 Section 8A boys high school hockey win over the Prowlers Tuesday at the Ralph Engelstad Arena.
The victory puts the defending Section 8A champions in position to claim the top seed when 2014 post-season play gets under way next month. The tournament semifinals (Feb. 22) and finals (Feb. 27) will be played in Thief River Falls. Despite being out-shot 27-12 on the night, the Prowlers played the No. 2-ranked (Class A) Green Wave to a 2-2 draw before Tweten pushed the puck into the net as Thief River Falls goalie Tanner Holmes spread himself across the goal mouth while players from both sides jostled for position near the crease.
The Prowlers were in desperate need of a whistle to stop play, but the official let the action go until the puck wound up in the net.
A six-game Thief River Falls winning streak ended with the loss. Because of a weather postponement, it was the first game in two weeks for the now 9-6 Prowlers.
“The effort was there,” said Thief River Falls coach Tim Bergland. “The kids played well. They (Green Wave) scored off that scramble at the end and that was the difference.”
First power play opportunity of the night came just 1:58 into the contest and the visitors promptly had a 1-0 lead as Grant Loven reached in from the side of the net to push the puck behind Holmes at 3:33.
Thief River Falls tied it when Zeb Nelson hustled past an East Grand Forks skater for the puck as it was sliding into the Green Wave zone and got off a backhand shot that beat goalie Josh Weber at 5:01 of the opening period.
East Grand Forks’ Reed Corbid was able to sneak in from the backside and snapped a close-range shot into the net at 4:35 of the second period for a 2-1 edge.
A Thief River Falls power play goal tied it again with 3:25 remaining in the second period as Keaton Huot directed a feed from Nelson past Weber.
An East Grand Forks penalty at 13:49 of the third period opened the door for the Prowlers, but the Green Wave skated it off and didn’t let Thief River Falls get Holmes off the ice in favor of an extra attacker until the final 32 seconds.
“We put ourselves in position to tie it at the end, but couldn’t get it done,” offered Bergland. “We need to get better on the power play. They kill penalties really well. We did get one power play goal, but we would like to generate more chances with the man advantage.”
The Prowlers are in Duluth this weekend for a Friday night game against Denfeld and a Saturday matinee vs. Marshall School. They will host Lake of the Woods Tuesday.
First period – EGF, Grant Loven (Reed Corbid, Jace Pesch), 3:33; TRF, Zeb Nelson (Michael Johnson, Adam Pancoast), 5:01.
Second period – EGF, Corbid (Dixon Bowen, Loven), 4:35; TRF, Keaton Huot (Nelson, Pancoast), 13:35.
Third period – EGF, Tanner Tweten (Pesch, Brandon Loven), 11:09.
Goalie saves – TRF, Tanner Holmes 7-13-4–24; EGF, Josh Weber 3-4-3–10.