Semifinal shutout: FHS girls’ hockey blanks Lakeville North to advance to finals
The Farmington Tigers girls' hockey team left no doubt how good they were through the first two games of section 1AA playoffs. The Tigers buried Rochester Century 14-1 at Schmitz-Maki Arena in the quarterfinals Wednesday, Feb. 7, and then they shut out South Suburban Conference rival Lakeville North 6-0 on Saturday, Feb. 10, at home in the semifinals to advance to the section finals. Farmington now plays Lakeville South, with whom they tied for second in the SSC during the regular season, on Thursday, Feb. 15, in Owatonna at 5 p.m. in the Owatonna Four Seasons Center. Lakeville South beat Kasson-Mantorville 6-0 in the quarterfinals and Owatonna 7-0 in the semifinals.
Quarterfinals versus Century
The game against Century was virtually over after the first period when Farmington jumped out to a 4-0 lead. While Century was able to score once in the second, it was nothing compared to the nine goals the Tigers pumped through the period. One more goal in the third gave Farmington the 14-1 win.
Eleven different Tigers scored the team's 14 goals. Senior Ellie Moser got the hat trick with two goals in the first and one in the second, while junior Marissa Agerter scored two goals of her own in the second period.
Also scoring in the first period were junior Bailey Kelley and senior Savanna Tucker. Scoring in the second period besides Moser and Agerter were: freshman Brenna Fuhrman, seniors Emily Rubins and Carly Simon, juniors Jenna Gerold and Cassie Knutson, and eighth-grader Claire Enright. Scoring Farmington's lone goal in the third was sophomore Izzy Zwart.
Shutting out the Panthers
Watching the first period of Farmington versus Lakeville North, most spectators would not have expected a 6-0 shutout. While Farmington had won two-out-of-three against the Panthers during the regular season, the three games were decided by a total of four goals. Both teams went back-and-forth as the atmosphere of the packed arena and the energy of the fans made the game exciting from puck drop. The Tigers and Panthers both had several opportunities to score in the first on power plays as each committed multiple penalties in the period. However, senior goalie Emily Auge for Farmington and the Panthers' goalie made big save after big save to keep the game scoreless in the first.
While the first period was evenly matched, once the second started it appeared that the Tigers had flipped a switch. They immediately showed they had another gear and hopped all over Lakeville North with a goal less than three minutes in by Gerold (assisted by freshman Carly Lancaster and junior Kiya Vincent). Less than three minutes later, Enright scored her first goal of the night on a power play with help from Agerter to give Farmington the 2-0 lead. Just a couple minutes after Enright's goal, Moser managed to get through the Panthers' defense and score on a snipe from the wing unassisted. The Tigers led 3-0 midway through the second and that would be the score headed into the third.
While a comeback was still possible for Lakeville North at this point, despite Farmington having dominated the entire second period, the Tigers soon made that possibility academic. Tucker scored less than two minutes into the third, assisted by Gerold and Knutson, to make it 4-0. Then Enright decided to end the game herself, scoring two straight unassisted goals (the last short handed), giving herself the hat trick and sealing Farmington's 6-0 win. After her last goal, about 20 hats were thrown onto the ice in her honor and promptly collected by Principal Jason Berg.
Heading into Thursday's matchup against Lakeville South, both teams beat the other while at home during the regular season. Farmington won at Schmitz-Maki 5-2 at the start of December and South won 3-2 on their home ice during the final games before sections.