Girls Hockey: Third period blitz leads Wingers past NorthfieldMaddy Hardyman picked a fine spot to score her first career varsity goal Thursday for the Red Wing girls hockey team.
By: Nick Gerhardt, The Republican Eagle
Maddy Hardyman picked a fine spot to score her first career varsity goal Thursday for the Red Wing girls hockey team.
Hardyman, an eighth-grader, scored the game-winning goal at 7 minutes, 26 seconds of the third period to help lead the ninth-ranked Wingers (15-5-1, 9-1 Missota) to a 6-3 victory over Northfield at Prairie Island Arena in Red Wing.
Hardyman, a third line player, filled in for an injured Emily Stegora on a rotational basis with Kayla Oberding and found herself on the doorstep of the goal to put away the game-winner.
“She’s a terrific eighth-grader,” Red Wing head coach Scott Haley said. “It’s all relative. She’s going to be a terrific high school player as she gets older.”
Paige Haley added two goals in the third period, including a jaw-dropping empty net goal from the top of the circle inside Red Wing’s own zone with 23 seconds to play.
Haley’s first goal was equally impressive as she skated from the Wingers’ zone through the Raiders defense to take a sharp angle shot that snuck through Lizzy Shellum’s pads to make it a 5-3 game.
For Paige Haley it’s been about being selective with her opportunities to score goals and she picked a good spot.
“Really the hardest part about this is we want her to move the puck, we want her to help create for others and then take opportunities when they’re more meaningful,” Scott Haley said. “That’s a really hard thing for her to balance out some times.”
The third period almost made up for a lackluster second period where Northfield scored three times and evened the game at 3-3 with two goals from Annie Pumper and one from Sarah Behr. The Raiders, who lost 10-1 against Red Wing on Dec. 15, outshot Red Wing 16-13 for the period and the Wingers took two penalties.
“You could tell this was a big game for them,” Scott Haley said. “You could tell their kids were pumped.”
Pumper scored 1:21 into the second and added a shorthanded goal at 5:33 to tie it. Nicole Schammel scored her 32nd goal of the season at 6:27 to give Red Wing a 3-2 lead that didn’t last long. Less than a minute later Behr scored a power-play goal to tie it at 3-3.
Part of the problem stemmed from the Wingers wanting to play a wide-open game, which left them vulnerable in transition.
“It’s all go, go, go,” Scott Haley said. “It’s great when it’s going good and you’re not getting caught.”
Red Wing, which outshot Northfield 52-29 for the game, ranks fourth in Class A in goals scored per game with 5.4 goals per game, but gives up 3.1 a game to opponents.
Schammel and Stegora, who suffered a shoulder injury in the game, scored in the first period to give the Wingers a 2-0 lead.
Lisa Nibbe made 25 stops in goal for Red Wing, which moves on to face sixth-ranked Blake Saturday in Hopkins.