The Rhinelander/Antigo girls' hockey team had their season opener on Tuesday night at the Rhinelander Ice Arena. Lakeland/Tomahawk had a late rally even without a few of their top players and used four straight goals to defeat Northern Edge 4-3.
Rhinelander/Antigo had a strong start and would tally two first period goals to take an early lead. But from there, Lakeland/Tomahawk raced back with four straight goals to take the lead and they would never look back. The Edge would score the final goal of the night to pull within one, but was not enough to get the job done.
On the night, Lakeland/Tomahawk would hold an 18-15 advantage on total shots. Northern Edge had eight of those shots in the opening period.
Freshman Evelyn LeVegue of Antigo made a strong varsity debut, and was able to score just 2:01 into the contest. Jade Forster took the initial shot, and LeVegue was there to capitalize on the rebound.
Then at 7:53, Alicia Turunen would connect on the Edges' second goal of the night. Sophomore Madi Losch slotted a pass to Turunen to give Rhinelander/Antigo a 2-0 advantage after the first period.
Lakeland/Tomahawk would start the second period with a chip on their shoulder and would respond early in the second with back-to-back unassisted goals from Makayla Fultz and Kate Vizanko just 15 seconds apart. And Kailey Godfrey give Lakeland/Tomahawk their first lead of the night after a goal at 13:38 in the second period.
On their fourth straight goal, Lakeland's Ally Pairolero would have the go-ahead goal at 4:13 in the third period, which proved to be enough for the victory.
Turunen would score her second goal for the Edge just minutes later at 6:47 to bring Rhinelander/Antigo within one goal, but that would be a close as they would get.
Within the final five minutes of the contest, Northern Edge had several opportunities to cash in the equalizer, but goalie Mariah Lear would deny any of those chances.
Senior Gracie Lenzner took the loss for the Edge and would record five saves in her efforts through the first two-periods. Freshman Nevaeh Forster finished in the net for Rhinelander/Antigo and made nine saves, and only allowed one goal in the third.
The Edge will face Lakeland/Tomahawk three more times this season, and proved the games will be a battle. It also showcased areas Rhinelander/Antigo will need to improve as they move forward.
Northern Edge will get back on the ice on Saturday when they host a doubleheader against Marquette Senior starting at 11:00AM at the Langlade County Multi-Purpose Building. The second game will begin at 4:00PM.