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The Hastings Raiders girls hockey team saw its comeback effort fall a goalpost short against Hopkins/SLP on Tuesday night. The Raiders nearly doubled up the Royals in shots, but were unable to find the net in the first period. In that period, the Raiders had a 10-6 shot advantage, but it was Hopkins getting on the board first on a power play marker to make it 1-0. It was a strange goal, with everyone stopping after the ref ruled the first shot no goal, but a smart rebound put it back behind the net and the Raiders trailed. The Raiders had a few chances in the first, but were not able to find an answer and went into the first intermission down a goal. In the second period, the Raiders would surrender another, and then five minutes later another, and they trailed 3-0 late. But the dam would finally break, and with under two minutes to go in the period the Raiders would get the first goal, when Madyn Hanson went top shelf blocker side with helpers from Jade Schauer and Karissa Thompson to cut the gap to 3-1. 80 seconds later, the Raiders would add another, this one from Kylie Gruden assisted by Madelyn Schuster, to make it 3-2. The Raiders had an opportunity in the 3rd to tie the game, and made it interesting. With a few minutes to go, Addie Seleski had a shot ring off the crossbar and maybe the post, and the Raiders gave it one last push in the 3rd period, but they were unable to find the tying goal. The loss drops the Raiders to 3-4, but their record is certainly not indicative of how the team is playing, looking like the better team in 6 of their 7 contests, and outshooting the opponent in 5. Bree Balster didn’t face a lot of shots, but she stopped 14 out of 17 in the contest. The Raiders went 2 for 3 on the penalty kill and 0 for 1 on the power play, with an offsetting penalty on both teams for roughing not counting towards a power play but counting towards a penalty. The Raiders managed to get 30 shots on net, with 10 in the first, 11 in the second and 9 in the third. They returned to action Thursday for a rare out of state trip to take on Western Wisconsin in Somerset, WI, before they open conference play Tuesday against Simley and Thursday against Two Rivers/Saint Paul. That is followed by a nonconference game on Friday against White Bear Lake, before a return to conference play against North Saint Paul/Tartan Co-op on December 13, and a trip to South Saint Paul on December 16. The Raiders will see where they stack up during this slate.


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