Thunstrom, Hogan lead Polars’ past Lakeville North

Led by the on-ice exploits of senior standouts Allie “Thunder” Thunstrom and Caitlin “the Cat” Hogan, the North Polars girls’ hockey six out-skated, out-shot and out-classed the Lakeville North squad in a 6-0 whitewash.

The game at Polar Arena Dec. 9 saw the “Thunder-Cats” record 10 points (five each) as the Polars scored just about every way possible.

North put pucks behind the Panthers goaltender while skating even strength, short-handed and on the power play.

In all the Polars threw 35 shots on goal and allowed just 14 shots by Lakeville North to reach the North net.

When they did, North senior net-minder Breanna Scavo was there to thwart any missiles from finding the back twines.

“Thunder” (Thunstrom) struck the Panthers for four goals and added an assist for a five-point game.

The “Cat” (Hogan) had two tallies and added three assists for her five-point venture.

It took the Polars almost 15 minutes to figure out the combination to open the door to the Lakeville North net.

Finally, Hogan slipped a feed to Jackie Engen, who relayed a pass to Thunstrom. She hit pay dirt at 14:53 of the opening stanza and North took the 1-0 leeway to the first intermission.

In the second period the Polars found themselves with a player advantage. As the penalty was wearing away, Thunstrom pulled the puck loose from the stick of a defender.

She sailed in on net and made good with a quick wrist shot that found the back twines. At 5:42 of the second canto, it was 2-0 North.

Two-thirds through the period, the Polars were assessed a penalty and again, “Thunder” struck.

This time Thunstrom gained control in the North end. She deked around a defender and out-skated her pursuer to go in alone. Her shot found the mark for a short-handed tally at 11:41 and gave North the 3-0 lead, which they held as play progressed into the third 17-minute session.

Early in the third period the Panthers went down a skater on a roughing penalty.

The Polars moved into the attack zone and saw their efforts pay off when Michelle McDonald slid the disc into Thunstrom who fed Hogan.

Hogan misdirected the puck from the doorstep and, at two minutes into the third period, the score became 4-0 Polars.

Then, another North power play (North had five such opportunities and tallied on four of them) resulted in yet another North goal.

This time it was “the Cat” who pounced on a loose puck. She wasted no time filing a shot to the back mesh, 9:58 into the third period.

With North dominating play and buzzing in the Lakeville North defensive zone, the efforts of the “Thunder-Cats” paid off one more time.

Hogan sailed into the circle to the right of the Panthers’ net where she feathered a feed to the goal mouth.

Thunstrom, on a patented play by the pair, cut through the slot and banged a shot to the back of the net.

With the six-goal North lead, the clock went to running time for the final 1:54 remaining to be played.

The shutout for Scavo was her second in seven games; she also has two games in which the opposition has scored just one goal.

The five points earned by Thunstrom pushed her season total to 23 points on 16 goals and seven assists.

Hogan moved her season total to 24, on 11 goals and 13 assists.

North has a non-conference record of 6-0-1 as they head into their first Classic Suburban Conference contest Dec. 13, 7:30 p.m. against Simley at the Vets Memorial Arena in Inver Grove Heights.

The Polars meet Hill-Murray at 8 p.m. on Dec. 16 at Aldrich Arena, before returning home to face Mounds View Dec. 17, and South St. Paul Dec. 20 in 7:30 p.m. games at Polar Arena.

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