Hermantown shuts out Alexandria in the Class A state quarterfinals

Hermantown Hawks fly high at Section 7A quarterfinal game

Hermantown Hawks fly high at Section 7A quarterfinal game

On Wednesday, the top-seeded Hermantown boys hockey team opened their fifth straight state tournament defeating Alexandria Area 6-0 in the Class A quarterfinals at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.

“It’s effort, it’s tempo. I think we played a very high tempo. We’re really hard to play against. We have tight gaps, our forwards backcheck super hard and that just wears teams down,” Hermantown head coach Patrick Andrews said.

Hermantown senior Josh Kauppinen scored just four minutes into the game to give the Hawks a 1-0 lead. The first period ended 1-0, with shots on goal narrowly in favor of the Hawks 13-12.

The Hawks started off the second period by killing an early penalty. Then, midway through the frame, Henry Peterson scored five seconds into a Hermantown power play to make it 2-0. Peterson would score again with 90 seconds left in the period, then AJ Francisco added another for the 4-0 Hermantown lead after two. The Hawks allowed only two shots in the second period to lead Alexandria in shots on goal 32-14 after two frames.

“At the end there my coach was just saying, shoot away. We know you’re hot right now. So yeah, it’s just pretty fun when we get the job done in the D-zone, we go in the O-zone,” Peterson said, a junior defender.

“They came out strong with us. They kind of evened up the shots and their goalie was holding them in it for a little bit, and then I think we just kind of started to put them away,” Will Esterbrooks said, a senior captain.

Five minutes into the third period Charlie Marchand scored to extend Hermantown’s lead to 5-0. River Freeman would put the nail in the coffin scoring his 20th goal of the season for the 6-0 Hawks victory.

Senior goaltender Dane Callaway earns the shutout victory making 16 saves to tie the Hawks’ program shutout record with 15. Hermantown out-shot Alexandria 43-16.

“I think it’s a great accomplishment. I’ve worked really hard for it and can’t do it without them,” Callaway said.

Hermantown advances to the semifinals Friday at 1 p.m. against No. 4 Mahtomedi.

The other semifinal is No. 3 St. Cloud Cathedral versus No. 2 Warroad Friday at 11 a.m. at the Xcel Energy Center. For the full Class A bracket, Click here.

The tournament is being televised on WDIO. For additional ways to watch or stream the games, Click Here.