Four players short because of illness, injury, and prom, the Team Wisconsin girls came back from a two-goal deficit in the second 'half' and made a game of it with North Dakota, but dropped a 3-2 extra period match with the ladies from the Peace Garden State Saturday afternoon in CCM NIT action at Fogerty Arena in Blaine.
It looked like TW was going to bust out of their scoring slump early, but ND goalie Lucy Morgan turned aside shot after shot in the early going before her team came to life.
The score was still 0-0 just over ten minutes into the first half when TW's Zoe Lohrei and ND's Alexis Sampson were battling for a loose puck in the circle just to the right of TW goalie Abby Severson.
Into the fray skated Anna German, made a move to get free and fired a shot on goal that was kicked out, but German grabbed the rebound and slid it past the netminder for the first score at the 10:37 mark of the period.
North Dakota made it a two-goal game seven minutes later when Aubrey Nelvin made an in-close deke and snuck the puck into the net with just over nine minutes left in the period.
That's how the period ended. The scoreboard showed TW holding a 22-11 shot edge in the period.
TW had a couple good chances early in the second, but Maddy Jablonski's shot from the high slot went bar-up instead of bar-down six minutes in, and Morgan stoned Annika Horman on a breakaway four minutes later.
Severson got into the act as well, making a pair of nice saves on a ND back-door attempt with 13 minutes left.
It took 41 shots, but TW got on the board with some inspired play with under 10 minutes left.
Morgan made the initial save on a TW shot, but Lauryn Hull was Johnny-on-the-spot and chipped the rebound past Morgan, with a helper from Taylar Meier to make it 2-1.
The ladies from the Badger State played at a very high level, determined to score the equalizer in the next few minutes. So much, in fact, that ND took a time-out with 5:15 left to give the players a breather.
It worked so well, that a goal was scored ten seconds later—by Team Wisconsin, that is.
Kiley Hahner grabbed a loose puck to the right of the goalie and tapped it past her to tie the contest at two apiece. Alyssa Heim and Drew Deanovich got helpers on the play.
With just over a minute left in regulation, TW went on the power play and called a time-out to set up a play but were unable to score and the game went to an eight-minute overtime.
The scoreboard had shots at 30-20 in the period, advantage TW.
Claire Casey did her best to end the match as she sent a shot off the goalie glove and crossbar into the netting, and was stoned by Morgan on a deke in a span of 45 seconds.
A minute later Sophie Schuster pounced on a long rebound and fired a shot through traffic that beat the TW goalie for the win.
Final shots on the scoreboard showed TW holding a huge edge, 57-24.
Severson stopped 21 shots for TW, while Morgan made 55 saves for ND.
Team Wisconsin will close out pool play with a 7:15 game tonight with the highly-touted Minnesota Senior team, which features the Minnesota Ms. Hockey winner (Madeline Wethington), along with two other finalists.