Photo Credit to John Olson
Let's try this again. Pine City Area Dragons and North Branch looking to meet tonight in the section semifinals after Saturday's game was postponed due to snow.
Time for a rematch between the Dragons and the Vikings. Last time these teams faced off it was a 3-2 overtime thriller at the Pine City Civic Center. Both of these teams come into this game red hot and are trying to advance to the section finals.
The Dragons are 21-5 on the season and have matched the most wins ever by a Dragon hockey team. Pine City is looking to advance to the section championship for just the fourth time in school history. This is only the 2nd time in 16 years that the Dragons have been to the section semi-finals. Pine City comes in on a 14-game winning streak after a 5-2 victory over Sauk Rapids-Rice on Thursday Night. Pine City led by senior Jonah Bergstrom's two goals took down the storm. Alex Laven was sharp making 16 saves on 18 shots.
Dragon Hockey head coach Grant Nicoll said, "The second period started out with pure domination, leading to a missed back check and a Sauk Rapids goal. One good thing to take out of it, is the boys did not hang their head, they went right back out and netted another goal to take that 2 goal lead. Sauk answered back on a short handed goal, which we went right ahead and answered with a power play goal. This is a good sign. The boys did not get down when scored on, they went right back out and back to work."
Their opponent, the North Branch Vikings, also sit at 21-5 on the season and boast a nine-game winning streak of their own. They started the playoffs with a bang defeating Mora/Milaca 11-0. The Vikings were led, as they have been all season, by Brady Meyer and Cody Moline combining for 5 of the 11 goals. hat combo has 126 combined points this season for the Vikings. Trevor Mellen was perfect in net saving all 16 shots he faced.
This season, the Vikings have the most wins in school history and have advanced to the semi-finals for just the second time in school history. In fact, North Branch has NEVER advanced to to even a section final game. Last season, the Vikings were bounced by the #3 seed Chisago Lakes in the section semi-final game.
Puck Drop is scheduled for 7:00 pm from the Chisago Lakes Ice Arena. The Game can be heard on 100.9 FM, 106.5 FM, AM 1350 and online.
Updated Section 5A Bracket: