Northern Edge forward Kassidee Linssen (33) fights CFM’s Joey Schemenauer for the puck along the boards near the visitors bench during a high school girls’ hockey game in Antigo Thursday, Feb. 13. (Scott Walbeck/Antigo Daily Journal)
2/15/2020 7:36:00 AM Edge falls to CFM in home finale
The Northern Edge girls' hockey co-op dropped its second straight game to end the regular season Thursday night.
Sidney Polzin scored twice and Chippewa Falls/Menomonie added an empty netter in the final seconds to defeated the Edge 3-1 at the Langlade County Multi-Purpose Building.
Edge coach Tom Roeser said Thursday's game was similar to Monday night's 3-0 loss at Bay Area. The Edge was outshot 42-19 in the contest and most of the scoring activity did not take place until the final few minutes of regulation.
"It was a good team. We got out played, probably didn't deserve to win and now we know what we've got to do come next Thursday, otherwise that's the end of the season for us," Roeser said, alluding to Thursday's rematch at Bay Area to open the WIAA playoffs. "We started playing a little better toward the end of that game and started controlling the zone a little more. That's one thing I'm disappointed about. I know we can play with these teams, but we have to mentally choose to."
Polzin, the Sabers' leading scorer, notched her 25th and 26th goals of the season in the contest. She scored on the power play 8:49 into the second period to give Chippewa Falls/Menomonie the lead and scored again at the 12:52 mark of the third on what Roeser said were similar plays were difficult saves for goalie Alicia Turunen to make.
"Alicia did a great job in the net once again, controlled rebounds. The two that did score on her were just really nice, hard shots from about the top of the circles," he said. "She got screened twice and that stuff happens when you let people stand around in front of your net."
The Edge made things interesting with 28 seconds remaining on a goal initially credited to Madi Losch but later changed to a Wyndi Saari tally on the scoresheet after the game. Saari tipped in a Losch shot from the point to cut the lead to one.
From there, the Edge pulled Turunen to try the score the equalizer, but Emme Bergh cashed in on a turnovers and scored on an empty net with 15 seconds remaining.
"I wasn't going to pull Alicia. I told her to be ready, but I wasn't happy with the way we were holding the zone, so I wasn't going to pull her," Roeser said of the late-game sequence. "We came back, got that goal at about the 30-second mark and we won the faceoff, started taking the zone and I had her coming to the bench right away. We tried to cut to the middle in neutral ice, or just taking the blue line and got the puck stripped and they went back and got the open netter."
Turunen, a senior from Antigo, made 39 saves in her final home start.
"That was pretty emotional for her. She's done such a great job for us," Roeser said. "She's stopped a ton of pucks over the last two years while I've been here. She played really well. I was glad to see that for her."
The Edge finishes the regular season with a 14-8-0 record. As a 6-seed for the WIAA playoffs, the team will travel to the Cornerstone Community Center in Green Bay to face Bay Area in a regional final contest this coming Thursday.
"I'm quite sure we're going to be playing on the big ice again," Roeser said, noting that the Edge played on a wider, Olympic-sized rink when they skated against the Ice Bears this past Monday. "So we've got to find a way to move the puck up and down the ice without skating it all the time - getting our forwards up, our weak side forwards reaction to the play better so they're ahead of it and we can use them as outlets. We've got to really start moving the puck down the ice using others."
Jeremy Mayo may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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