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Hudson Raiders Book Return Ticket to Madison

02/29/2020, 2:45pm CST
By Bill Berg Jr, WiPH Staff

The Hudson Raiders topped the Eau Claire Area Stars 2-1 to return to state.

The last two teams to represent section 1 in Madison were the Hudson Raiders, and Eau Claire Area Stars. In 2018 the Stars won the state title. In 2019 the Raiders fell short, losing the state championship game to Fox Cities in double overtime.

The two met in front of a packed house at the Somerset Ice Arena, and Hudson outlasted the Stars taking a 2-1 win and returning to Madison.

The Stars controlled most of the first period, winning all the battles and beating the Raiders to all the loose pucks, but the period ended with nobody scoring.

Hudson came out better the second period and collected an early power play to pick up a little speed. Late in the power play, Hudson played the puck off the side of the Stars' net. A Stars defender fumbled the puck while trying to go the other way, but the goalie crossed the net, and Taylor Wandschneider collected the loose puck and put it in.

That is where the scoring would stay, and Hudson killed off a 5-on-3 power play in the second to gain a lot of confidence.

In the third, Hudson picked up their fourth penalty, but a nice play in the defensive zone by Nikki Olund saw her taking the puck and hitting Leah Parker in the middle of the ice. Parker out raced the defense and put one past goalie Alesha Smith to make it 2-0 Hudson.

The Stars picked up a power play goal a few minutes later on a heavy shot from the point by Emmie Verhaagh.

Unfortunately for the Stars that is all they would pickup, and a great Hudson attack prevented them from pulling Smith for the extra attacker as time wound down.

Smith stopped 13 of 15 in the loss for the Stars. Alanya Kunshier stopped 20 of 21 in the win for the Raiders who were out shot in all three periods.

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