Edina goalkeeper Uma Corniea blocked a shot from Maple Grove's Jenna Timm in the third period. Photo: Jerry Holt • Jerry.Holt@startribune.com
Oddly enough, a second period Maple Grove breakaway excited Edina goaltender Uma Corniea.
The onrushing player, Stella Retrum, was a teammate at Breck.
“I faced her many times and I knew what to expect so that helped,” Corniea said.
Previous practice showdowns were unkind to Corniea but, she said, “I got her this time.”
Corniea, an unflappable freshman, made huge saves throughout Edina’s 3-0 victory on Friday in the Class 2A semifinal at Xcel Energy Center.
“That’s a different game if she doesn’t make these breakaway saves, 2-on-1 saves and point-blank saves from the slot,” Edina coach Sami Reber said. “She absolutely was our best penalty killer and our best D-zone player tonight.”
Top-ranked Edina advanced to its fourth consecutive Class 2A state tournament championship game courtesy of a 3-0 victory Friday against Maple Grove.
No. 1 seed Edina (28-1), which defeated No. 5 seed Maple Grove (21-7-1) by scores of 2-1 and 5-1 in two previous meetings this season, scored in the first period and relied on its defense and freshman goaltender Uma Corniea for the shutout.
With the victory, the three-time defending champions advance to face Andover and get a chance to avenge their only loss this season, a 1-0 setback in their first game.
Outshot 15-7 in the first period, Maple Grove almost escaped unscathed. Then Edina’s Emma Conner and Tella Jungels, helping to kill a Hornets penalty, got loose on a 2-on-1. Jungels buried the puck against a previously flawless Crimson goaltender Brooke Cassibo with 10 seconds left.
Corniea stopped a Maple Grove breakaway early in the second period to preserve her team’s advantage. Midway through the third period she twice stoned Crimson shooters from close range.
Sophomore Vivian Jungels added a goal at 12:24 of the third period.
Check back later for more on the game.