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Kenai, SoHi hockey notch road wins

The visiting Kenai Central hockey team handed Palmer its first Railbelt Conference loss, toppling the Moose 3-0 on Saturday.

The Kardinals move to 8-13-0 overall and 3-4 in the Railbelt.

The victory is unlikely to affect the final placement of teams in the conference standings.

Palmer still leads the league at 5-1, with a pair of games against 0-6 Kodiak left on the schedule.

Soldotna is 5-2 with a game left against Kenai. Since the Stars lost twice to Palmer, in order to take first Soldotna would need to beat Kenai in the final league game of the season and have the Moose lose twice to the Bears.

Kenai would join Juneau at 4-4 with a victory over Soldotna, but the Kards would lose the tiebreaker to the Crimson Bears because Juneau defeated Kenai twice.

The conference gets three automatic berths to state — at this point, Palmer, Soldotna and Juneau-Douglas — then there are two other at-large berths available. There is no conference tournament.

Seanna Swanson stopped 27 shots to shut out the Moose and make an at-large berth for the Kardinals even more likely.

Landen Cialek got the Kards started in the first period with help from Sawyer Vann and Logan Mese.

Mese connected on the power play in the second period, with help from Cialek and Avery Martin.

Martin finished off the scoring in the third period, with help from Mese.

Brody Joseph made 22 saves for Palmer.

Soldotna 7, Wasilla 5

Jace Appelhans and Silas Larsen each scored twice as the visiting Stars won a back-and-forth nonconference game on the road to move to 10-6-2 overall.

Soldotna started out hot, taking a 3-0 lead by the time 13:11 was left in the second period.

Appelhans, assisted by Gehret Medcoff, and Larsen, with help from Mykah Booth, scored in the first period, then Boone Theiler had an unassisted goal early in the second.

The Warriors then ticked off four unanswered goals — two from Branson Starheim and one each from Dalan Duble and Haakon Wold.

Ezekiel Miller, with help from Aiden Burcham, steadied the Stars by tying the game at 4 with 2:17 left in the second.

With 11:48 left in the game, Duble gave Wasilla the lead again, but SoHi scored three unanswered to hammer down the win.

Larsen scored on a Booth assist, Dawson Lockwood scored on an Appelhans assist and Appelhans scored on a Larsen assist.

Tanner Clyde saved 26 for the Stars, while Kole Kite stopped 15 for the Warriors.

Saturday

Kardinals 3, Moose 0

Kenai 1 1 1 —3

Palmer 0 0 0 —0

First period — 1. Kenai, Cialek (Vann, Mese), 0:14. Penalties — Kenai 3 for 6:00.

Second period — 2. Kenai, Mese (Cialek, Martin), 6:08. Penalties — Kenai 1 for 2:00; Palmer 3 for 6:00.

Third period — 3. Kenai, Martin (Mese), 11:25. Penalties — 3 for 14:00; Palmer 1 for 2:00.

Shots on goal — Kenai 5-10-10—25; Palmer 9-9-9—27.

Goalies — Kenai, Swanson (27 shots, 27 saves); Palmer, Joseph (25 shots, 22 saves).

Stars 7, Warriors 5

Soldotna 2 2 3 —7

Wasilla 0 4 1 —5

First period — 1. Soldotna, Appelhans (Medcoff), 5:31; 2. Soldotna, Larsen (Booth), 10:24. Penalties — Soldotna 1 for 2:00; Wasilla 1 for 2:00.

Second period — 3. Soldotna, Theiler (un.), 1:49; 4. Wasilla, Starheim (Hoyt), 4:08; 5. Wasilla, Starheim (McGrew), 9:01; 6. Wasilla, Duble (Holler), 9:29; 7. Wasilla, Wold (Starheim, Myers), 11:17; 8. Soldotna, Miller (Burcham), 12:43. Penalties — Soldotna 4 for 8:00.

Third period — 9. Wasilla, Duble (Starheim, Sanders), 3:12; 10. Soldotna, Larsen (Booth), 7:27; 11. Soldotna, Lockwood (Appelhans), 11:16; 12. Soldotna, Appelhans (Larsen), 13:42. Penalties — Soldotna 1 for 2:00; Wasilla 1 for 2:00.

Shots on goal — Soldotna 8-7-7—22; Wasilla 5-17-9—31.

Goalies — Soldotna, Clyde (31 shots, 26 saves); Wasilla, Kite (22 shots, 15 saves).

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