Photo by SportsEngine
Rarely does the first game in a season mean much more than an afterthought when the high school postseason starts months later.
But Friday’s game between Stillwater and Hill-Murray featured two probable contenders in Class 2A, Section 4. And the season opener for both teams did not disappoint.
Stillwater ended rival Hill-Murray’s season in the section title game last March, clinching a spot in the state tournament with a 1-0 win. Friday, the Ponies started the winter schedule with a 2-1 victory thanks to second-period goals by sophomores Brooke Nelson and Addison Finn.
A strong second period of offense propelled Stillwater to a 2-1 victory in a fast-moving game with Class 2A, Section 4 rival Hill-Murray at the St. Croix Rec Center in Stillwater Friday.
Brooke Nelson and Addison Finn each scored second-period goals to give Stillwater (1-0) a one-goal lead that would stand the rest of the game.
Hill-Murray (0-1) built an early 1-0 lead when Ella Hornung scored a power-play goal in front of the Ponies' net in the first period. But the Pioneers were shut out the rest of the way despite leading in shots for the game 44-32.
Stillwater goaltender Lily Timmons made 43 saves in the winning effort, including 23 in the third period to preserve the victory. Hill-Murray's Taylor Anderson made 30 saves.
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