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Blake Bears battle back to win second straight Class A championship

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The Class A championship game turned out to be a big one for Blake sophomore Sylvie Wallin, who scored two goals, including the game winner with 10:56 left in regulation to lead the Bears to a come from behind xxxx win over the top seeded East Grand Forks Green Wave Saturday afternoon at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.

It was the second straight title and fifth overall for the Minneapolis based private school who plays their home games in the arena on the Hopkins campus.

In the first period, The Bears eight grade goalie Anna Kreusel got an early test, stopping four shots in the first 1:38. Then the Green Wave had a "Mack Attack" on the Bears with sisters Haley and Alexa Mack collaborating on two goals. The first was set up by Alexa, who centered Haley from the left goal line and she scored her fifth goal of the tournament. Then it was Alexa's turn to shine in the X's spotlight as she scored on a rebound to put EGF up by two.

But Blake bounced back in the second period when Carly Bullock received a pass from Alex Lovaas and she scored from the left doorstep. EGF had a chance to widen their lead but Kreusel, playing at the top of the crease, made an outstanding save of Haley Mack's shot.

Wallin clinched the state championship for the Bears in the third period with a pair of goals. Her first ricocheted off of Green Wave goalie Madi Galstad and entered the net. She got the game winner on a pass from her fellow sophomore Bullock and her shot from behind the right face off circle and entered the cage. Green wave head coach Jim Scanlan pulled Galstad with 1:15 remaining for a sixth attacker but Blake used strong defense to prevent EGF from sending the game into overtime.

The Green Wave out shot the Bears 31-24.

Blake ended their season with a record of 23-71. EGF, in their first state tournament wrapped up their season 26-3-1.

In the third place game, Nicole Schammel scored two goals to lead the Red Wing Wingers to a 5-2 win over St. Paul United. The consolation game at Ridder Arena in Minneapolis went to Proctor/Hermantown as Sophie McGovern scored two goals to lead the Mirage to a 4-1 win over the Alexandria Cardinals.

McGovern's Mirage teammate Riley Fawcett was the recipient of the Class A Herb Brooks Award. The award is given to the player who best exemplifies the characteristics of the late coach. Fawcett will play for Bemidji State next season.



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