Nervous and excited were the two words used the most to describe the energy surrounding the first-ever high school girl's hockey game for the Pine City Area program.
The Dragons skated a very young team out on the ice with just one senior and a starting lineup that was loaded with underclassmen. Despite the lack of high school hockey experience the girls utilized their excitement to score eight goals to defeat Prairie Centre for the first win in the Dragon girls' hockey history.
Due to the lack of experience, a slow start would've been expected for the Dragons, but their start was anything but slow as they jumped on the Blue Devils right from the start. Malia Mikyska started things off for Pine City scoring the first goal in program history early in the first period. With the first goal out of the way, the intensity picked up for Pine City as they were able to score their second one just a few minutes later from Jennea Szucs. The Dragons headed into the first intermission up 2-0.
Pine City Area and their fans were thrilled with the start, but knew there was still a lot of game left to play and needed to continue to put the pedal down in order to claim victory. They did just that picking up four more goals in the second period. Lexa Valvoda, Lena Roubinek, Emma Kirby, and Rhiannon Ashworth all picked up goals for the well-balanced Dragon squad that saw almost every player on the roster get their name on the score sheet.
With a 6-0 lead going into the third period Pine City just needed to play tough defense and wrap up an already strong performance which they did adding another goal by Ashworth and one by Arissa Rydberg to finish with eight goals for the Dragons.
The lone senior on the team is goalie captain Jordan Millam from Mora. Millam is a great leader for this team on and off the ice and one of the few Dragons with previous high school hockey experience. It showed tonight between the pipes and she allowed just one goal with 16 saves for Pine City. Millam earned a free bacon cheeseburger meal from Nicoll's Cafe with her player of the game honors. After the game she told WCMP she is excited to be a captain and a leader for a lot of the younger girls. Millam was quick to compliment her teammates: "They came out flying. I was expecting us to be competitve with this team but I was surprised at how aggressive we came out right away. I was glad they really really showed up."
Coach Aagaard earned his first career victory as Dragon Girls' head coach. After the game he told WCMP, "It was a great team effort they really moved the puck well and spread the ice and put the puck in the net." He said he was very excited about how strong his team was top to bottom.
The Dragons are now 1-0 this season and host Princeton on Tuesday night. Coach Aagaard said, "We are going to keep on building on our current practices, working hard, and preparing for the next game."
Photo Credit Four Seasons Photography