The Soldotna hockey team checked all the boxes Tuesday, notching a big win over a rival on senior night while staying alive for the Railbelt Conference crown.
The Stars topped Kenai Central 7-1 at the Soldotna Regional Sports Complex, pulling away with four goals in the third period.
Seniors Corbin Wirz, Galen Brantley III, David Aley, Alex Montague, Wyatt Medcoff, Lance Chilton, Journey Miller and manager Marina Walton were honored.
While the Kardinals are already locked into the third slot in the Railbelt Conference and a trip to the Division II state tournament from Feb. 6 to 8 at the Patty Center in Fairbanks, the Stars are still playing for the top slot in the conference.
After downing the Kards on Tuesday, Soldotna now must win at Juneau-Douglas on Friday and Saturday to secure the top seed over Homer.
The Stars grabbed a lead in the first period when Trent Powell, assisted by Jose Montague and Dylan Dahlgren, and Brantley III, assisted by Jose Montague and Silas Larsen, scored.
In the second period, the Kards had 11 shots to SoHi’s 10. Kenai was putting heavy pressure on SoHi’s net when the Stars took a quick trip down the ice and Aley, assisted by Alex Montague and Dylan Walton, made it 3-0 headed to the third.
SoHi stretched that to 5-0 as Gavin Haakenson, assisted by Journey Miller and Brantley III, and Brantley III, assisted by Miller, scored.
Kenai then got its lone goal of the night when Travis Verkuilen, assisted by Cooper Stock and Tucker Vann, scored with 10:11 to play.
Aley, assisted by Alex Montague and Powell, and Haakenson, assisted by Medcoff and Miller, finished the scoring.
Wirz made 33 saves on 34 shots. Jackson Cross played the first two periods and made 18 saves on 21 shots. Tommy Baker played the third and stopped 17 of 21 shots.
Stars 7, Kardinals 1
Kenai 0 0 1 —1
Soldotna 2 1 4 —7
First period — 1. Soldotna, Trent Powell (J.Montague, Dahlgren), 4:07; 2. Soldotna, Brantley III (J. Montague, Larsen), 10:22. Penalties — Soldotna 1 for 2:00.
Second period — 3. Soldotna, Aley (A. Montague, Walton), 4:18. Penalties — Soldotna 2 for 4:00.
Third period — 4. Soldotna, Haakenson (H. Miller, Brantley III), 0:35; 5. Soldotna, Brantley III (J. Miller), 3:32; 6. Kenai, Verkuilen (Stock, Vann), 4:49; 7. Soldotna, Aley (A. Montague, Powell), 6:29; 8. Soldotna, Haakenson (Medcoff, J. Miller), 11:28. Penalties — Kenia 1 for 2:00; Soldotna 1 for 2:00.
Shots on goal — Kenai 8-11-15—34; Soldotna 14-10-25—49.
Goalies — Kenai, Cross (21 shots, 18 saves), Baker (21 shots, 17 saves); Soldotna, Wirz (33 shots, 32 saves).