Boys hockey: Raiders lose two SEC games
Hastings boys hockey coach Russ Welch knew two games last week were important ones for the Hastings Raiders. Hastings had a 6-7 record heading into the week, and could have secured a spot in the top half of the Suburban East Conference with wins over Forest Lake and Stillwater.
But Hastings ended up losing both games and slipped to 6-9 on the season.
Worse for Welch was how Hastings lost. The Raiders were outscored 13-2 in the two games.
In both games, Hastings fell apart in the second and third periods.
Against Stillwater on Saturday, Hastings actually held a 2-1 lead through the first period.
In the second period, though, it was all Ponies. They scored three goals in the second period and four third-period goals to win, 8-2.
Against Forest Lake, Hastings trailed 1-0 through one period, then surrendered three second-period goals. Hastings ended up losing 5-0.
"Once we got down two goals, we folded up the tent," Welch said. "We need to play with a little more internal fortitude. When we get down, we need to still compete. We've quit competing, and that's really disappointing. These teams are not that much better than we are."
Welch planned to talk to his team about the losses at practice on Tuesday.
"We don't know why this happened last week," he said. "We're going to talk about it Monday. We need to play better through adversity. You gotta pick yourself up and get back at it. You have to keep your nose to the grindstone."
Hastings took the lead against Stillwater on Saturday on a goal at 5:51 by junior Andrew Lindberg. He was assisted by Nate Flynn and Cody Block. Stillwater countered four minutes later. Hastings took the lead back at 12:58 on a goal by Max Fox and an assist by John Klein.
Tom Sieh played in goal for Hastings. He made 23 saves.
Against Forest Lake, Mike Porrez made 19 saves and Sieh made 12.
Hastings plays host to White Bear Lake on Thursday. Game time is 7:30 p.m.
The timing to face White Bear Lake is good -- the Bears have 10 players out of their lineup for two weeks because of a hazing incident.
Hastings lost to White Bear the first time in December, 7-1.
On Saturday, Hastings plays host to East Ridge in a 7:30 p.m. game. It is parent's night for Hastings. Hastings beat East Ridge, 4-1, in the first meeting between the two schools.