by Jason Olson
Anoka 9, Irondale 0
The Tornadoes broke out of its 0-3 start to the season with a lopsided victory at the Schwan Center on the National Sports Center campus in Blaine.
Luke Leitschuh was one of 12 Anoka players to collect points, as he led the way with a trio of assists and one goal in a four-point effort. Juniors Connor Iverson and Cale Grinde each picked up three points, scoring twice and assisting on another goal.
Anoka busted out to a 5-0 lead in the first period as it outshot the Knights 13-2. That shooting difference grew in the second and third periods (20-5 and 13-3) to give the visitors a confidence boost going into Saturday’s home game against Andover. Tornadoes goalie Cameron Blomlie made 10 saves to post his first win and shutout of the season.
Anoka’s Luke Olejnicak scored six seconds into the game to set the tone and Brock Motter made it 2-0, 3:10 into the game.
The ugliest part of the Northwest Suburban Conference-versus-North Suburban contest came late in the first period as Anoka’s Kristian Manthey and Irondale’s Mitch Brandes mixed in a few punches in an after-whistle altercation near Anoka’s goal. The pair received five minute major penalties for fighting and 10 minute game misconducts.
East Ridge 12, St. Francis 2
For the second time this season the Saints gave up double-digit goals, this time it came against second-year program East Ridge by way of a 12-2 score at East Bethel.
Following Tuesday’s loss, the Saints have been outscored 39-5 now. The lone St. Francis goals came in the second period from Brett Aldrich and Greg Zebro. Goalie Mitchell Zebro started in net, playing the first 27:02 (Seven saves, five goals) before the team turned to Tanner Iverson for the final 23:58 (seven goals, four saves).
North Branch 7, Legacy Christian 4
Legacy Christian continued to struggle Tuesday night, despite being outshot 36-31 and going 3-for-8 on the power play. The Vikings went 1-for-7 with the man advantage and outshot Legacy 13-9 over the final period.
Legacy outshot North Branch 14-7 in the first period, entering the first intermission tied 1-1 thanks to Matt Larson’s power play goal for the Lions, with assists going to Brandon Lippold and Nolan Bloyer.
North Branch started the second period very strong, scoring two short-handed goals, 14 seconds in and at the 1:10 mark to take a 3-1 lead.
Legacy’s Ike Larson and Cody Cole scored in the third period for the final score.