Packer girls knocked off by Albert Lea

Published 9:20 pm Wednesday, February 6, 2019

The No. 4 seeded Austin girls hockey team saw its hot streak come to an end when it lost 3-1 to the No. 5 seed Albert Lea in Riverside Arena Wednesday.

The Packers out-shot the Tigers 39-10, but they weren’t able to convert a lot of scoring opportunities. AL (7-14-2 overall) took the lead for good when Adison Malakowsky scored just 11 seconds into the third period.

Austin’s Faith Sayles makes a save in the second period against Albert Lea Wednesday night in the ifrst round of the Section 1A Tournament at Riverside Arena. Eric Johnson/

Austin (10-14-1 overall) came into the game on a six-game winning streak and it started the game with plenty of shot opportunities near the net. Hannah McMasters had the lone goal for the Packers as she scored to make it a 1-1 game in the first.

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Austin head coach Carley Grunewald was proud of how her team battled this year.

“It’s been fun to watch them play this last month and a half,” Grunewald said. “They really turned it around from the beginning of the season with some injuries and random circumstances. They played like the team I knew they could be and I think they were impressing themselves a lot of the time with what they could do.”

Austin’s Lily Holtz looks down for the puck in a Section 1A playoff game against Albert Lea Wednesday night at Riverside Arena. Eric Johnson/

Austin will graduate a strong group of seniors including Erin Bickler, McMasters, Lily Holtz, Kylee Hanlon, Jaiden Schuster, who had an assist, Faith Sayles, who had seven saves Wednesday and Cassity Nangle.

Earlier in the day Holtz had signed her commitment to play hockey at Division III Saint Scholastica.

“They’ve played together since U10 hockey and they bring a whole dynamic with leadership and we have some big holes to fix next year,” Grunewald said of the seniors. “I think emotionally it’s going to be hard on the girls to know they’re leaving.”

Austin’s Kylee Hanlon winds up on a shot against Albert Lea in the first period of a Section 1A opening round game at Riverside Arena. Eric Johnson/


AL 0  1  2    3

Austin 0  1  0    1

First period

No scoring

Second period

(AL) Lucy Stay

(A) Hannah McMasters (Jordyn McCormack, Jaiden Schuster) 8:12

Third period

(AL) Adison Malakowsky :11

(AL) Stay 9:59

Shots: Austin — 39; AL — 10

Power plays: Austin — 0-for-3; AL — 0-for-4

Austin senior Lily Holtz signs her commitment letter of College of St Scholastica as her parents Troy and Diana Holtz look on in AHS Wednesday. Photo Provided