HASTINGS — Sierra Smith and Jane Vezina each delivered two goals to help send Stillwater to an 8-3 Suburban East Conference girls’ hockey victory over Hastings on Friday at Hastings Civic Arena.
The Ponies (2-0 SEC, 3-1) jumped out to a 3-1 first-period lead and pulled away to a 5-2 lead with two goals in the final minutes of the second after out-shooting Hastings 34-15 in the first two periods.
“We were clicking on all cylinders,” Ponies coach Tony Scheid said. “It was definitely our best game of the season. It was one of those nights where we showed up and everyone came to play from the drop of the puck and played extremely well together as a team.”
Smith, Carlie Hart and Emily Wiegand each scored for Stillwater in the first and, after the Raiders pulled within 3-2 four minutes into the second period, Vezina and Smith scored at 15:34 and 16:38 to carry a 5-2 lead into the third.
“We have a lot of really good shooters on this team, maybe one of the best shooting teams we’ve had, and they’re hitting the net,” Scheid said.
Stillwater poured it on in the third as Georgia Eger scored on the power play midway through the period and Vezina followed with her second goal while the Ponies were shorthanded with just two minutes remaining in the game. Sami Claussen notched her second goal for the Raiders to climb within 7-3, but Brinna Dochniak scored in the final seconds to provide the final margin.
Caitlin Carter finished with 23 saves for the Ponies in her first start of the season.
The margin was unusually lop-sided for this series, which Scheid lamented might be discontinued with the Raiders joining the Metro East Conference next season.
“It was really a fun night,” Scheid said. “That’s a classy group down there in Hastings and they had a jam-packed crowd and the band was playing — it felt like an old-time hockey game. That’s the best hockey experience we have on the road and that might be the last time we go down there. We’re hoping to keep those guys on our schedule. We’ve been coaching against that staff since we started and they had Erica McKenzie and we had Chelsey Jones and there was a strong rivalry that started there. Hopefully we can keep that going. We’ve had some unbelievable games over the years with those guys.”
Stillwater 3 2 3 — 8
Hastings 1 1 1 — 3
First period — 1. St, Sierra Smith (Jane Vezina) :53; 2. St, Carlie Hart (Vezina, Brinna Dochniak) 4:06; 1. Has, Sami Claussen (Kiki Radke) 7:14; 3. St, Emily Wiegand (Lauren Greeder, Dochniak) 16:17.
Second period — 2. Has, Radke (Natalie Simons) 4:37; 4. Vezina (Smith) 15:34; 5. St, Smith (Vezina, Hart) 16:38.
Third period — 6. St, Georgia Eger (Taylor Naugle) pp, 8:20; 7. Vezina (Smith) sh, 14:59; 3. Has, Claussen (unassisted) ps, 15:52; 8. St, Dochniak (Ali Biagini, Sam Scheid) pp, 16:54.
Penalties — St, ; Has, .
Saves — St (Caitlin Carter) 5-8-10—23; Has (Brooke Weber) 15-14-12—41.