PUCKS: Wolves fall in state tune-up, Mustangs out at CIC tourney; C/ER girls to play for 3rd place
Chugiak’s high school hockey season ended early Friday night while Eagle River’s is to be continued.
The Mustangs lost 6-1 to West in the fifth place game of the Cook Inlet Conference tournament at Ben Boeke, while the Wolves fell 3-1 to Service in the CIC’s third place contest at the McDonald Center.
Eagle River’s defeat comes with a consolation prize: A fourth place finish in the tournament and a trip to state next week. Chugiak’s does not; the Mustangs are done for the season after going 0-2 in the conference tourney. Chugiak has now failed to reach state in back-to-back seasons after winning it all in 2017.
In Anchorage, No. 6 seed West continued its late-season surge with an early game onslaught, beating Chugiak starter Kylie Watts for a trio of first-period goals by Jacob Easley, Nicholas Opinsky and Jack Opinksy.
The Eagles weren’t much easier on Alayna Breivogel in relief, adding second-period goals by Revy Mack and Nicholas Opinsky and another in the third by Matthew Patchin.
Chugiak’s only score came from Jacob Kosinsky, who cut the lead to 5-1 late in the second off a Josh Boneta assist.
Watts made eight saves on 11 shots for No. 4 seed Chugiak, which got six saves on nine shots from Breivogel.
Will Simpson made 33 saves for the Eagles, who were outshot 34-20 but still earned their fourth win in their last five games.
Wolves finish fourth
In Eagle River, the No. 3 seed Wolves fell to a Southside team for the second straight night in a chippy third-place affair at the Mac. Brent Edmonson scored all three goals for Service in the win, which came one night after the Wolves fell in triple overtime to No. 2 seed Dimond.
Eagle River led 1-0 after the first period on a power play goal by Tucker Lien off assists from Brayden Rachow and Logan Dudinsky.
Service took a 2-1 lead through the second period on a pair of power play goals of its own, equalizing on Edmonson’s first goal at the 8:08 mark and taking the lead on his second with 3:09 left in the period.
That’s how the score remained until Edmonson scored against an empty net with 20 seconds to play.
Service will open the state tournament without Sam Bourdon, who was sent off with 9 seconds left for head contact and a game misconduct.
Service captain Kevin Taunton made 27 saves on 28 shots; Eagle River’s Ryan Gray stopped 20 of 22.
Despite the loss, the Wolves will play in the Class 4A state tournament for the third time in school history — and the third in the last four years. Eagle River finished fifth in back-to-back state trips in 2016-17.
The CIC tournament concludes Saturday when No. 1 South takes on No. 2 Dimond at 6:30 p.m. at Ben Boeke.
Chugiak/Eagle River girls to play for third
The Chugiak/Eagle River girls hockey team finished fourth in pool play at the Anchorage Hockey Association girls hockey tournament after dropping a 6-0 decision to Service/East Friday at the Dempsey-Anderson ice arena in Anchorage.
Chugiak/Eagle River fired more shots in the game, but Lenaya Braniff stopped all 27 she faced for Service/East. Morgan Richards made 15 saves on 21 shots for Chugiak/Eagle River.
The teams will play a rematch Saturday at 1 p.m. at Ben Boeke in the tournament’s third place game.