Junior Hockey: Alexandria Blizzard win home opener over Willmar with a 10-goal effort – The Rink Live

ALEXANDRIA – With a win on Saturday, the Alexandria Blizzard hockey workforce has gained its home opener over the Willmar WarHawks in again-to-again seasons. Alexandria gained 10-1 on Saturday and feature a 3-1 file underneath head trainer Jeff Crouse to start out the 2022-23 NA3HL season.

“Our guys were just clicking well,” Alexandria Blizzard assistant trainer Jon Crouse mentioned about Saturday’s win. “They were getting pucks in deep and going to work. It was the home opener, so our guys had a little extra energy, and their shots were going in.”

The Blizzard additionally beat the WarHawks of their 2021-22 common season home-opener, however through a a lot nearer ranking of five-4.

Willmar (1-4) misplaced its 2022-23 common season home opener to Alexandria through a 2-0 ranking on Oct. 1.

The Blizzard’s 10-goal effort on Saturday used to be led through 3rd 12 months participant Cole Klingbeil, who completed with a hat trick.

“We were moving the puck so well, it could’ve been any of our guys on the ice who could’ve finished with the hat trick,” Klingbeil mentioned. “We took a win in Willmar’s home opener, and beating them in our home opener also feels amazing.”

The ahead from Mahtomedi leads the workforce thru 4 video games in targets with 4 and issues with 9.

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Cole Klingbeil seems to create on offense throughout the Alexandria Blizzard’s 10-1 win over the Willmar WarHawks on Oct. 15, 2022. Klingbeil scored 3 targets within the workforce’s 10-1 win.

Sam Stuve / Alexandria Echo Press

Alexandria began issues off sizzling within the first duration with 4 targets. It then scored 3 in every of the general two frames.

Roseville local Gavin Carlson, a ahead, additionally scored more than one targets for the Blizzard, together with the primary one of the most sport a short while after puck drop. Carlson is considered one of a few gamers that Jon Crouse hopes may give a deep lineup this season.

“We’re pretty deep up front,” he mentioned. “We’ve got a lot of kids here that can make the lineup every night, so it’s hard making the lineup every night. You’ve got to leave out some pretty good players sometimes. The guys that are in there are doing a great job working hard, and they’re playing well together. It’s nice because we have guys that can play on the first line or fourth line or anywhere in between. They don’t get bothered by who they’re playing with. They seem to have some good chemistry right now.”

Kyle Abrahamson, a Cloquet local, earned the win in web for the Blizzard with 26 saves. Abrahamson is two-0 in web this season, whilst teammate Alex Lamont, a Minneapolis local, has a 1-1 file.

“Our goaltending has been good so far this year,” Jon Crouse mentioned. “They’ve all been working hard, and they seem pretty calm right now in net. They’re seeing the puck pretty well right now and even when our defense does break down, they’re there to help them keep it out of the net. It’s nice to see, especially when you have a nice defensive effort.”

The Blizzard completed Saturday’s tilt with a 41-27 shot-on-function merit.

Willmar’s lone function got here in the second one body (Michael Sweetland), which minimize its deficit to a few earlier than Alexandria scored six unanswered.

Alexandria got here into the evening with the aforementioned win towards Willmar on Oct. 1, a 5-3 win over the Minnesota Loons on Sept. 24, 2022, and a 5-3 loss to the Granite City Lumberjacks on Sept. 23, 2022.

Defender Wyatt Johnson, alongside with forwards Josiah Gronholz, Matt MacIntyre, Ashton Collings and Ethan Moerke, every scored for the Blizzard within the win on Saturday.

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The Alexandria Blizzard mob Gavin Carlson after he scored the workforce’s first function in a 10-1 win over the Willmar WarHawks on Oct. 15, 2022.

Sam Stuve / Alexandria Echo Press

Johnson is the workforce captain this 12 months, whilst defenders Karsten Senden, Charlie Larsen and ahead Ryan Hadland, who’s tied with Klingbeil for probably the most assists at the workforce with 5, are assistant captains.

“The leaders on this year’s team are doing a great job of including everyone,” Jon Crouse mentioned. “Everyone seems to be having fun. Our captains have stepped for us and led us that way.”

Gronzholz is 2nd at the workforce in targets up to now this season with 3. As a senior, Gronholz helped anchor the 2021-22 Alexandria Area High School boys hockey workforce that gained the Section 6A identify and gained a sport within the

2022 MSHSL Class A State Tournament.

Gronholz led the Cardinals in issues throughout his senior season with 61 (36 assists and 25 targets).


Josiah Gronholz

“Josiah only played with us for part of last season, so we’re obviously looking for him to have a big year,” Jon Crouse mentioned.

Gronholz performed in 10 of the Blizzard’s 49 video games within the 2021-22 season. He scored 5 targets and had 12 assists.

The Blizzard also are serious about some freshmen from North Dakota, amongst others.

“We have three kids from North Dakota, Caleb Moore, Jayden Luck and Ashton Collings, that were all-state players last year,” Jon Crouse mentioned. “Once they get their feet under them, I think they’ll be pretty good. I’m really looking for all of our new guys to pull their own weight because I expect it to be a battle to get in the lineup each night. And I expect them to be locked in.”

Alexandria is coming off a 2021-22 season the place it went 25-20-2 and completed fourth within the Western Division in the back of Willmar, the Mason City Toros and Granite City.

Granite City used to be the highest seed within the Western Division and eradicated Alexandria within the department semifinals of the Fraser Cup Playoffs with a 2-0 sweep en path to successful the department finals and making it to the Fraser Cup Championship Tournament (gained through the Rochester Grizzlies).

This season, the Blizzard are aiming to make a deeper run within the postseason.

“I think we communicate very well on the ice. We move the puck and everyone’s just in the right spot,” Klingbeil mentioned.

The Blizzard head all the way down to Mason City, Iowa, for a two-sport collection on Oct. 21 and 22 towards the Toros. The Toros then trip as much as Alexandria for a two-sport collection on Oct. 28 and 29.

Willmar – 0 1 0 – 1 

Alexandria – 4 3 3 – 10 


G – Gavin Carlson (2), Josiah Gronholz, Ethan Moerke, Ashton Collings, Wyatt Johnson, Cole Klingbeil (3), Matt MacIntyre

A – Logan Lukaseczk, Ashton Collings (2), Ryan Hadland, Charlie Larsen (2), Cole Klingbeil, Justin Wasvick (2), Matt MacIntyre, Jayden Luck (2), Bazl Cook (2), Josiah Gronzholz, Caleb Moore, Matt Scribner (3),

SAVES – Kyle Abrahamson (W), 26


G – Michael Sweetland

A – Kevin Odlaug, Chandler Dennis

SAVES – Wyatt Olsanowski (L), 22; Payton Mancuso, 9

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