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Wayzata beats Hermantown to end two-game skid

12/02/2016, 7:15am CST
By Heather Rule, SportsEngine

The Trojans defeated the Hawks 5-1 to win their first game of the season.

blocked

Hermantown's Ryan Sandelin (11) had his shot on a third-period breakaway blocked by Wayzata goalie Sawyer Anderson, who had 23 saves in the Trojans' 5-1 victory. Photo by Mark Hvidsten, SportsEngine


goal

Wayzata's Matt Cossette (14) slipped the puck past a diving Dawson Pietrusa (10) for the Trojans' second goal. Joe Ocholik (16), who scored the first goal, assisted on the play. Photo by Mark Hvidsten, SportsEngine

In a battle of the reigning Class 1A and Class 2A boys’ state hockey champions Friday, Class 2A came out on top as Wayzata beat Hermantown 5-1 at Plymouth Ice Center.

The Trojans finished killing their third penalty of the game in the second period and needed some momentum. They had three players in front of the net scrambling to jam the puck home, but it wouldn’t go.

Just a few seconds later, junior Grant Anderson got the puck back in the zone and fired a quick pass to senior Joe Ocholik who was in a perfect spot to put it away in front of the net with 10:17 left in the period for his first goal of the season.

Less than two minutes later, senior Matt Cossette scored after an offensive zone faceoff to extend the lead to 2-0 and put the momentum back on Wayzata’s sticks.

“Finally when two go in, they believe on their own,” said Wayzata coach Pat O’Leary.

The Trojans outshot the Hawks 11-9 in that period, after mustering just three shots on goal in the first.

O’Leary and his staff gave junior goaltender Sawyer Andersen the nod in net, after senior Reid Waszczenko started the first two games. Coming into the week, O’Leary said they didn’t know who’d end up in goal. So they went “old school” and waited to see how the week of practice developed.

Andersen earned his shot, O’Leary said.

“Sometimes you just need to shake it up a little bit, and he’s been waiting to play,” O’Leary said. “He’s worked hard. That backup goalie role, if there is such a thing, is not very glamorous.”

Throughout the week, Andersen worked on his high-glove and blocker saves because he “always [has to] be prepared” for the game. He found out he was starting after Thursday’s practice.

Hermantown, ranked first in the Class 1A poll by Let’s Play Hockey, outshot Wayzata 7-3 in the first, but Andersen came up big in keeping the game scoreless.

“I was really excited to play, so I was just out there having fun,” he said.

Perhaps the biggest save of the night came with the Trojans up 2-0 in the third period with 11:24 to go. Hawks senior Ryan Sandelin, who scored 27 goals last season, made a move around the defender and drove to the net. Andersen made a sprawling save to keep his then shutout intact.

Andersen said afterward that he knew he had to make a play. He was ready to push over and knew Sandelin wouldn’t go to his right with the puck on his backhand, Andersen said.

“Then it hit my toe, and I just covered it up,” Andersen said.

A 2-1 game instead of 2-0 might have turned out differently.

“If he scores there, then you’re kind of biting your fingernails a little bit,” O’Leary said.

Instead, the No. 11-2A Trojans (1-2-0) added an unassisted goal from Anderson a few minutes later for a commanding 3-0 lead.

“We worked a lot on scoring this week in practice,” Anderson said. “Just getting the puck deep and getting it to the net.”

Then it became a goal-scoring spree for the next couple minutes. Wayzata junior Colin Schmidt made it 4-0 just 27 seconds later. Hermantown denied Andersen the shutout 12 seconds after that, on a goal from senior Jesse Jacques. The Trojans added an empty-netter with less than three minutes to go.

With the win, Wayzata rebounded from a 0-2 start last weekend when it lost to Maple Grove and Edina at the Turkey Trot. The Trojans lost 11 players from last year’s championship team. Meanwhile, last year’s Class 1A champion Hermantown falls to 0-1.

Andersen made 23 saves for Wayzata, but he said he won’t remember every one of those. He’ll focus on something else.

“The win,” he said.

Hermantown goalie Cade McEwen finished with 22 saves.

First Report

In a battle of the reigning Class 1A and Class 2A boys’ state hockey champions Friday, Class 2A came out on top. Wayzata beat Hermantown 5-1 night at Plymouth Ice Center.

The No. 11-2A Trojans finished killing their third penalty of the game in the second period and needed some momentum. They had three players in front of the net scrambling to jam the puck home, but it wouldn’t go. Just a few seconds later, junior Grant Anderson got the puck back in the zone and fired a quick pass to Joe Ocholik who was in a perfect spot to put it away in front of the net with 10:17 left in the period for his first goal of the season.

Less than two minutes later, senior Matt Cossette scored after an offensive zone faceoff to extend the lead to 2-0 and put the momentum back on Wayzata’s sticks. They outshot the No. 1-1A Hawks 11-9 in that period, after mustering just three shots on goal in the first.

Anderson scored midway through the third to put his team up 3-0. His teammate Colin Schmidt scored 27 seconds later, followed by Hermantown’s lone goal from Jesse Jacques 12 seconds after that. The Trojans (1-2-0) added an empty-netter.

Trojans goalie Sawyer Andersen had 23 saves. Cade McEwen stopped 22 of 27 shots for the Hawks (0-1-0).

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