Girls hockey: Packers shut down Tartan attack

In a make-up girls hockey game Feb. 4, the South St. Paul Packers invaded Tartan Arena and left the Titans feeling as cold as the subzero temperatures that caused the weather-related postponement in the first place.

Though the Titans had a occasional sorties into the Packers zone, they could not penetrate the visitors’ armor and the result was a 3-0 setback.

South St. Paul goalie Sydney Conley recorded 11 saves to gain the shutout.

Though they don’t name three stars in high school hockey, perhaps earning a star would have been Tartan net keeper Maggie Straka.

The senior goalie nearly stood on her head while turning aside 28 of the 31 missiles hurled her way.

“I thought we played hard and were in the game all the way,” said South St. Paul mentor Dave Palmquist. “We just came off a tough loss to Hill-Murray and today we played with renewed assertiveness. The entire team put forth a good effort.

“That is just what we need to get ready for the playoffs. We got back on track today,” Palmquist said.

“We had a good effort today; it just didn’t turn out to our advantage,” said Tartan head coach Nick Fuerst. “We’re kind of beat up having played five games this last week. We’ll see what we can do in the playoffs.”

The Classic Suburban Conference game was the season finale for each team.

Gaining what turned out to be the game-winning tally on a power play was Maddie DeSmith after taking assists off the sticks of Abby Palmquist and Makena Burke at 13:30 of the first period.

Once more after sustained pressure in the Tartan zone, the Packers scored again.

Following a charge up ice, they clicked for a second goal. Palmquist passed to Bridgette Miller, who relayed to DeSmith at 15:00 to move to a 2-0 margin at the end of one.

The Titans, behind the goaltending of Straka, held the Packers off for the second period and most of the third.

The last goal came when Anna Leadens fed the puck to Miller, who put it into the back twines at 14:42 for the 3-0 final.

Wally Wakefield can be reached at

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