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East Ridge girls hockey: Raptors start 2-0

East Ridge sophomore forward Abigail Roeser puts a shot on net Thursday against Tartan at Bielenberg Arena in Woodbury. The Raptors picked up a 6-1 season-opening victory. (Bulletin photo by Nick Gerhardt)

East Ridge peppered Tartan with shots Thursday to open the season at Bielenberg Ice Arena in Woodbury, but couldn’t break the game open until the third period in what turned into a 6-1 rout.

The Raptors (2-0) held just a 2-1 lead after the second period despite holding a 26-9 shot advantage, but took advantage of two Titans penalties and added two even-strength goals in the third period.

“They had a great goalie,” East Ridge head coach Wes Walz said. “Their goalie is a senior and I watched her closely in warmups. It was the first time I’d really seen her and I’m almost shocked that we got six goals on her because she is one of the best goalies I’ve seen.”

The Raptors put a total of 45 shots on goal for the game and finished 2-for-6 on the power play. East Ridge junior forward Cara Kaufer scored two goals and sophomore forward Katherine Scheibner added two goals. Junior Danielle Waldon and sophomore forward Anya Hafiz also scored for the Raptors.

Scheibner scored the go-ahead goal at the 11 minute, 18 second mark of the first period. Kaufer had given East Ridge a 1-0 lead 4:20 into the game, but Tartan responded with a goal at 5:27 to even things.

The Raptors sustained pressure on the Titans defense throughout the game and clearly had an intent to put more pucks on net this season.

“I think it was just get it in, work hard, get it to the net as fast as we could, make sure we got those breakout plays down right so we could get back into the offensive zone,” junior forward Hannah Johnson said. “I thought we all had the scoring mentality on us right away.”

East Ridge held Tartan to 12 shots in the game.

Following the season-opening win, East Ridge blanked Shakopee in a non-conference game on the road Friday.

East Ridge senior forward Kayla Bender pumped in a pair of goals in the third period and senior forward Jaedyn Walz had a first-period goal to lead the Raptors to a 3-0 victory in Shakopee.

East Ridge finished with 17 shots on goal and kept the Sabers to six for the game. Raptors sophomore goaltender Erin Cheatham made six saves for the victory.

Shakopee went 0-for-5 on the power play.

Jessie Andersen, Hafiz, Waldon and Johnson all had assists for East Ridge.

Next, the Raptors face Suburban East Conference foe White Bear Lake Saturday in White Bear Lake.

-Nick Gerhardt