Chisago Lakes didn’t start the season with a bang by upending three-time defending Class 1A champion Breck. No, the Wildcats’ 3-2 victory over the Mustangs on Jan. 14 was more like an ear-splitting KABOOM in announcing their arrival as a bona-fide state championship contender.
While Chisago Lakes suffered a subsequent 5-2 loss to Blake on Jan. 18, the Wildcats have since reeled off eight-straight wins for a 9-1-0 record and ascension to No. 1 in the Class 1A coaches' poll from Feb. 18.
Senior Jenna Lawry and junior Dani Burgen are the twin engines propelling Chisago Lakes’ offense and they'll need to be at their high-scoring best to solve a No. 4-1A Mound Westonka team that's allowing a shade more than one goal per game. Lawry, a Minnesota Duluth commit, has 16 goals and 13 assists. Burgen, committed to Minnesota State Mankato, has 15 goals and 13 assists. Both rank among the state’s top 11 in scoring. Senior Anna Hanson has been rock-steady in goal, posting a 1.85 goals-against average and .927 save percentage.
Chisago Lakes last appeared at the state tournament in 2012 and has never won a quarterfinal game in three appearances.
Mound Westonka (8-0-0), one of five unbeaten teams entering the week, is also getting spectacular goaltending, as senior Callie Nelson ranks ninth in the state with a 1.05 GAA. Her .936 save percentage and eight victories also places her among the state leaders. Senior Grace Peterson is the team’s scoring leader with 13 goals among her 22 points.