Hockey season is here and upon us. The Dragons opened the season on the road on Friday against a team who has won Section 5A two of the last three seasons. Although they were right in it going into the final minutes of the game, Monticello/Maple Lake prevailed and won by a final score of 5-2.
The Moose opened the scoring just five minutes into the first period when a shot was deflected by the leg of a Pine City defender. Monticello held that lead throughout the period and took the 1-0 lead into the first intermission. Dragon coach Grant Nicoll said, "The varsity did not start out very hot out of the gates. The boys came out very soft and were not ready for the speed of Monticello. We let them take it to us in the first period, but at the credit of the boys they adapted their game and started to turn the tables."
When the puck dropped in the second puck dropped in the second period, the Dragons scored almost instantly. The goal was scored by their leading scorer from the 2018-19 season, George Miller. The rest of the first line, Seth Linnell and Parker Sell, had the assists on the goal. After that, it went downhill for the Dragons as Monticello would score 18 seconds later. Monticello would score another by the end of the period to make their lead 3-1 headed into the break.
Once again to start the third period, the Dragons would score in the first minute of play. This time, the goal was scored by Gabe Westbrook with an assist going to Parker Sell. Toward the end of the game, Monticello would put two in the back of the net to end the game at a final score of 5-2.
Despite the three goal deficit, Nicoll praised his team's efforts, "The boys did some really good things, but in the end we did some really bad things that need to be changed for us to be successful. There were many times we had guys in the correct spots, but not doing the correct things. These boys will get better, and we will be a force by the end of the season."
Pine City Area looks to bounce back this week against Chisago Lakes on Tuesday. You can listen live when the Dragons take on the Wildcats on Tuesday night on 106.5 FM, 1350 AM, or stream it live on wcmpradio.com
PC 0 1 1 = 2
Mont 1 2 2 = 5
George Miller - 1 goal
Gabe Westbrook - 1 goal
Parker Sell - 2 assists
Seth Linnell - 1 assist
Alex Laven - 20 saves on 25 shots