CEC wins battle of the Lumberjacks 2-0

Cloquet-Esko-Carlton scored two first -period goals and held off Bemidji the rest of the night to capture the "Battle of the Lumberjacks" Friday at Cloquet.

Cloquet-Esko-Carlton scored two first -period goals and held off Bemidji the rest of the night to capture the "Battle of the Lumberjacks" Friday at Cloquet.

It was the season finale for both teams. Bemidji closed 19-5-1 and CEC 15-6-4.

The game matched the No. 6 and 14 rated teams in the state AA rankings.

But the host Jacks made those rankings seem reversed. They outshot Bemidji 41-13 and kept control of the contest from start to finish.

The winners broke the scoreless tie at the 11:47 mark of the first period when junior Whitney Anderson took a feed at the red line to break in behind the Bemidji defense and beat Savanna Osborn from point blank range


Sadie Lundquist and Montana Vichorek drew the feeds on the play.

The second goal was a gift. In the midst of a line change, junior defender Michelle Allen dumped the puck into the Bemidji zone.

As the puck zeroed in on the goal it hit some debris on the ice, taking a high bounce over the stick of Osborn, off the pipe and into the net.

And that was it. For the next 36 minutes, neither team scored though CEC held a wide territorial advantage.

Osborn kept Bemidji within sight, handling 39 shots, equaling her season high set one game ago at Moorhead.

But the lack of offense did her in.

The game was played in a tournament atmosphere something both teams seek in their season finale.

Bemidji will open play at BSU Feb. 10 before the meet shifts to Alexandria for the semifinals Feb. 13 and title game Feb. 16.


The pairings will be set next week with the play-in games Thursday matching the 7-10 and 8-9 seeds.

Bemidji will get the No. 1 seed and take on the 8-9 winner in its opener. Moorhead is the likely No. 2 seed and will face the 7-10 winner in its first game.

"Except for a few seconds, we played excellent hockey," said BHS coach Matt Menne. "CEC is probably the best defensive team in the state and used its big rink to keep opponents away from the goal and prevent close range shots."

"Again we did not come out strong and need to work on developing a sense of urgency and play every minute of every game as if it were the last game of the year," Menne added. "We're working hard on our power play but it still needs more refining."

Bemidji had only three power play chances in the relatively clean game.

It allowed five, two coming in the final five minutes to deny any chance of staging a late comeback.

Both goals came at even strength.

The B Team ended its year at 16-6 with a 2-1 decision, its seventh in its last eight starts and 13th in its final 15 games.


That team surrendered only 30 goals in its 22 games with only one opponent scoring more than three. It posted eight shutouts and seems ready to funnel a number of quality players to next year's varsity.

Of the five Bemidji losses three were shutouts by Hibbing 3-0, Grand Rapids 1-0 and CEC 2-0. All three are state ranked.

Bemidji 0 0 0---0

CEC 2 0 0---2

FIRST PERIOD: Anderson (Lundquist-Vichorek) 11:47; Allen 15:25; Penalties: CEC-Cordle, trip 4:44; Bem-Reutzel, check 12:54; Bem-Swenson, hook 17:00

SECOND PERIOD: None; Penalties: CEC-Anderson, interference 12:12; CEC-Gittings, interference 15:02

THIRD PERIOD; None; Penalties: Bem-Dickson, trip 4:03; Bem-Reutzel, check 11:42; Bem-Perrault, roughing 14:18

Goal Stops


Bem-Osborn 8 14 17---39

CEC-Thunder 2 7 4---13

What To Read Next
Get Local