Photo Gallery: Edina vs. Wayzata
“Honestly, the last meeting, I think we were a little over confident,” said Wayzata senior captain Kasen Sauer, who scored a goal and two assists in the latest victory. “But this time, we were on our game, we were going hard, we’re having fun.”
Wayzata (16-6-2) didn’t register a shot on goal until the 6:23 mark of the first period. But it turned out to only be the beginning of a goal-filled game in front of a packed arena at Plymouth Ice Center. It’s the third time this season Wayzata, which averages 3.5 goals per game, scored at least seven in a game. They did it Saturday with six different goal scorers.
In the first period, after Edina had some early pressure and set up on the power play with no results, Wayzata junior defenseman Jack Hartle fired a point shot through traffic that was tipped on the way to the net. It bounced around before Sauer pounced on it for his seventh goal of the season.
“I thought it was a great moment just to get our team rolling,” Sauer said. “We just didn’t stop from there.”
Sauer is listed as a defenseman, but moved back to forward halfway through the season, the position he played last year. He started on left wing Saturday as part of a line, along with Cade De St. Hubert and Jake Mattson, that was responsible for Wayzata’s first three goals.
Cade De St. Hubert scored his 12th of the season to make it a 2-0 game after one period, and the Trojans bumped the lead to 3-0 at the second intermission. In the third, junior Brittan Alstead scored back-to-back goals for Wayzata. His first came in front when he stuck with a rebound and shot with his back to the net. His next tally, making it a 5-0 game, came on the back door for a power-play goal.
It felt good to score, said Alstead, who had three goals this season coming into the game, but “a goal’s a goal.”
“Today we came in and we just wanted to beat Edina,” Alstead said. “We didn’t care who scored. This was kind of our stepping stone into the playoffs.
“Me getting two goals or me getting zero goals, I’m happy with a 7-0 win against Edina,” Alstead said.
Alstead agreed with his teammate that confidence was the biggest change from the prior meeting with Edina until now. Wayzata has been ranked as high as No. 1 in Class 2A this season, which resulted in the Trojans being “a little high on ourselves,” Alstead said.
“Coming into Edina, we thought we were going to beat them by a lot,” Alstead said. “I think after that game, we said to ourselves, ‘boys, we are a good team. We’ve got to play like it.’”
They certainly played like it as Saturday’s game went on, reaching running time with 4:40 left in regulation. Running time is applied when a team leads by six goals in the third period.
“That was surreal,” Sauer said. “That’s never happened in my hockey career. We never played Edina and got to running time.”
In net, Wayzata senior Will Ingemann (16-6-2) made 25 saves for his sixth shutout of the season. He entered the game ranked fourth in the state in save percentage and seventh in goals-against average. Those marks now stand at 1.35 goals-against average and .945 save percentage after Saturday.
“Our coach comes in the locker room, and he tells us every game, ‘boys, the goalie’s not the only part of the team. We’ve got to support him,’” Alstead said. “I think the second and third (periods), we supported him. It’s nice having him back there, because you can ease off a little bit, knowing that you have the best goalie in the state holding you back.”
At the other end, Edina (17-6-1) allowed a season-high seven goals. They’d previously allowed four goals only once, in a 4-0 loss to Minnetonka. Edina coach Curt Giles credited Wayzata for playing well and said his team didn’t play very well. They’ll need to regroup and take a few things away before heading into section play.
“This has been creeping into our game for the last little while,” Giles said. “Robbie’s [Clarkowski, goaltender] kind of bailed us out the last few games and stuff like that. If we’re going to take a lesson, I guess this is a good lesson for us.”
The Lake Conference foes split the regular-season series, with Edina winning its home game on Jan. 26 by a 5-3 score. These Class 2A, Section 6 rivals have also met in the section playoffs in each of the past three seasons; Edina defeated Wayzata 1-0 in overtime in last year’s semifinals.