HUDSON, Wis.-- The third time was the charm for the Hudson girls’ hockey team.
After losing to the St. Croix Valley Fusion twice during the regular season, the Raiders skated past the Fusion for a 6-1 victory in a WIAA girls’ hockey sectional semifinal Tuesday night in Baldwin.
The victory sent the third-seeded Raiders to the sectional semifinal against the top-seeded Eau Claire Area Stars this Saturday, Feb. 29, at noon in Somerset. Hudson split with Eau Claire during the regular season, handing the then No. 1 ranked Stars their first loss of the season, 4-3, on Jan. 7 in Hudson before losing 4-1 Jan. 28 in Eau Claire.
St. Croix Valley struck first Tuesday night when Abbie DeLong converted a pass from Madyson Shew 5 minutes, 13 seconds into the game. But it was all Hudson after that.
Nikki Olun tied things up just 1:28 later off an assist from Taylor Wandschneider before Mallory Thompson scored twice-- at the 9:04 mark assisted by Quinn Winkoski and Bayley Glasspoole, and with 47 seconds left in the period with another Glasspoole assist-- to give Hudson a 3-1 lead after one.
Wandschneider knocked home the rebound of a shot by Glasspoole for a power play goal at 5:23 of the second period to make it a 4-1 game. Morgan Miller also earned an assist.
The Raiders kept up the pressure in the third period and Winkoski found the back of the net with just under seven minutes remaining in the game with assists from Glasspoole and Thompson, before Leah Parker made the final 6-1 with Wandschneider picking up her third point of the night.
Hudson goalie Alayna Kunshier stopped 21 of the 22 shots she faced, including all 16 over the final two periods, while St. Croix Valley goalie Sydney Seeley finished with 19 saves.
Saturday’s sectional final winner in Somerset will advance to the WIAA state tournament March 5-7 in Madison.