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Junior hockey: Wilderness pushed to brink

Minnesota will have to win three games in a row at home next weekend to extend their season.

Minnesota Wilderness logo.jpg

FAIRBANKS, Alaska — The Minnesota Wilderness paid dearly for taking penalties in the first period late Saturday, April 23, as the Fairbanks Ice Dogs scored three power play goals in the first period and cruised to a 7-1 win in Game 2 of a best-of-five North American Hockey League Midwest Division semifinals series.

Minnesota, now down 2-0 in the series, will need to win three consecutive games in Cloquet next weekend to extend their season.

Kevin Marx Noren, Tristan Sarsland and Jake Hale all pounced on the man advantage to put the division champion Ice Dogs in front 3-0 after a period. Two more even strength goals early in the second period chased Wilderness goaltender Matthew Smith, and were followed by two additional tallies that made it 7-0 after two periods.

Gunnar Thoreson scored a consolation goal with 1:42 to play for Minnesota. Smith made 10 saves and Konrad Kausch 14.

For Fairbanks, Jack Ring scored twice and Kayden Hargraves made 37 saves.

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Game 3 is Friday at 7:15 p.m. at Northwoods Credit Union Arena in Cloquet.

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