Edina goaltender Andrew Rohkohl makes a save on a breakaway attempt by Wayzata's Brian Machut. Photo by Loren Nelson
Tyler Nanne is having a good week.
After being named as one of ten Mr. Hockey finalists on Wednesday, the Edina (17-4-1) senior defenseman nailed a shot in the third period to break a 1-1 tie in the second-ranked Hornets' 3-1 victory over No. 4 Wayzata (16-5-1) Thursday night.
"It's been a busy week, that's for sure," said Nanne said, sporting a black eye after Thursday's physical victory over the Trojans at Braemar Ice Arena, the Hornets' fifth straight win since a 3-3 tie at Wayzata on Jan. 18.
The Hornets struck first, with sophomore Garrett Wait burying his eighth goal of the season (he scored his ninth on an open net late in the third), to give Edina a 1-0 lead for the only score from either side during the first half of the game.
The Trojans got their only goal of the night from freshman defenseman Hank Sorensen to tie it at 1 in the second period. Wayzata finished with a 26-25 advantage in shots on goal.
The matchup featured crushing hits from the beginning and and became extremely chippy toward the end of the second period. Edina head coach Curt Giles knew it would be a battle from the opening puck drop.
"It's a big rivalry game, a Lake conference game with two of the better teams," Giles said. "We knew it was going to be a physical game, but the thing about hockey is you have to be disciplined. You've got to play hard but know when to back off."
The Hornets held their composure during the rocky ending to the second period and Nanne, an Ohio State commit, found the back of the net for his sixth goal of the season on a power play with 7:03 remaining in the third period to put the Hornets up 2-1.
This is Nanne's first season playing full-time defense, and Giles is pleased with the results so far this year, even though the senior "was a pretty good forward, too."
"He's made a real nice transition from forward to defense," Giles said. "He brings a lot of speed and a lot of moxy back there. Tyler's just a real good defenseman, he's a good player and a great team kid."
Nanne was quick to point out his teammates helping him on the game-winning goal and Mr. Hockey finalist selection but understands the defending champion Hornets aren't done yet in 2014.
"It's a great honor and I appreciate it a ton, but I couldn't have done it without my teammates," Nanne said. "We've got a bunch of great guys on our team … the ball's rolling, that's for sure."