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Minot takes advantage of DHS miscues in shutout

Press Photo by Royal McGregor Dickinson junior forward Kennadee Fritz, right, skates against Minot’s Taryn Love during a statewide game on Saturday at Dickinson Recreation Center.

The Dickinson High girls hockey team had nerves prior to stepping on the ice against Minot.

The nerves reared its ugly head right out the gate.

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The Majettes shut out the Midgets 6-0 in a statewide game on Saturday at Dickinson Recreation Center. Both times the teams met this season ended in a Minot shut-out win.

“It was their standings and their stick handling,” Dickinson junior forward Kayla Wallace said regarding the pregame jitters. “When we think of Minot, we think of them just being a really good team because we lost to them a lot in the past.”

Just a minute into the first period, Minot let loose and freshman forward Mackinzy MacIver scored an unassisted wrist shot. Two minutes into the game the Majettes had five shots on goal and held Dickinson to three in the period.

Dickinson senior goalie Paige Fahlstrom was pulled in the first and finished with 12 saves. Junior Kelsey Gillen replaced her and had 20 saves for the remainder of the game.

MacIver scored her second goal in the second period, while senior forward Makaila Anderson led her team with a hat trick — her first goal coming late in the first period and the other two in the third.

“We started off well, came out a little slow in the second period but third period we picked it right back up and picked the game up,” Anderson said. “It was the pressure we put in their zone, keeping them out of our zone and pressing really hard to put the pucks in.”

The Midgets started to put their game together in the second period and made adjustments. Dickinson held Minot to one goal and began to attack the net more and had 10 shots on goal.

“We were playing more of our positions and we went out there all nervous and then we kind of realized we needed to kick up our game and stuff and we still have a chance, otherwise we’d just give up,” Wallace said.

The Midgets were plagued with penalties throughout the game and committed 10 overall — many of which gave Minot easy advantages on the ice. At 4 minutes, 3 seconds in the first, senior forward Rachel Lantz was called for hooking penalty and the Majettes quickly turned it into a power-play goal.

The Midgets found themselves in the penalty box more as the game went on and committed half of its penalties in the third period. Minot was nearly penalty free the entire game until the last 30 seconds of the game when freshman forward Bryanna Bergeron, who scored a goal in the first period, was called for interference.

Dickinson head coach Al Takle acknowledges his team is physical, but they also need to find middle ground between competing with teams and playing aggressive.

“We’re a physical team, but the girls got to realize they can’t have their sticks up by the other team’s head,” Takle said. “We talk about it a lot and some of that is learning. We went from at the beginning of the year not wanting to engage with the other team to now we’re doing that and being physical.”

Despite the 3-8 record, the team’s morale hasn’t been lowered. If anything, the Midgets recognize the progress they’ve made since the beginning of the season and the vast improvement from last year where they finished with one win.

“We just never give up, we know now we’re starting to win against teams and we’re growing older, we are not the young team that started out as,” Wallace said. “We’re playing these teams and it’s weird actually competing with them and making goals against the teams we used to not make goals against.”

Takle added: “I think our girls recognize the improvement we’ve had, it’s an uptick form where they were last year. We concentrate on where we’re getting better … Our spirits have been pretty good in that regard.”

The season doesn’t get any easier as Dickinson hosts the defending state champions Bismarck at 6 p.m. Tuesday. The Blizzard are undefeated and the Midgets will have to keep their fundamentals in check in order to keep up with them.

“Just those little things that get the puck out of the zone, get the puck deep in their zone and that’s what we got to do,” Takle said.

Minot 3 1 2 – 6

Dickinson 0 0 0 – 0

FIRST PERIOD: 1, Minot, Mackinzy MacIver (unassisted) 1:00. 2, Minot, Byranna Bergeron (MacIver, Kinsey Hanson) 12:28. 3, Minot, Makaila Anderson (unassisted) 13:46.

SECOND PERIOD: 4, Minot, MacIver (Anderson) 2:46.

THIRD PERIOD: 5, Minot, Anderson (MacIver, Bergeron) 1:26. 6, Minot, Anderson (Sydney Boyce) 7:03.

SAVES: Minot, Sydney Swanson 3-10-6–19. Dickinson, Paige Fahlstrom 12-x-x–13; Kelsey Gillen 4-11-5–13.

Meaghan MacDonald

Meaghan is the sports page designer and copy editor for the Forum of Fargo-Moorhead.  After graduating from James Madison University (Va.) in May 2013, she moved from New Jersey to North Dakota to start pursuing her career in sports journalism and was a sports reporter for the Dickinson Press and covered Dickinson State athletics. Meaghan has been working for the Forum since June 2015.