Hockey boys continue to baffle

FL tops Cretin, falls to East Ridge

Lucas Kohls and CJ Franklin (right) hit the deck during last week’s big win over Cretin-Derham Hall. (Photo by TLC Digital Images)

The Ranger hockey boys continued what has become a roller coaster of a season with a nice win and a tough loss last week.

Forest Lake tallied five second-period goals in a win at Cretin-Derham Hall (10-10-2) on Thursday, only to fall Saturday at East Ridge (6-14-2).

Sophomore Brett Gravelle had two goals and two assists in the 6-4 victory over the Raiders.

“We seemed to find some chemistry again in the Cretin game,” said coach Aaron Forsythe. “The kids were working hard and moving pucks well which created an abundance of scoring chances.”

The Rangers erased a 2-0 deficit in the second period. Gravelle’s first goal came on assists from Lucas Kohls and CJ Franklin and made the score 2-1. Cretin-Derham Hall went back up by two goals before Forest Lake closed the period with four straight scores. Eric Herbert scored unassisted, then fellow defenseman Jack Schmidt found the net 18 seconds later on assists from Franklin and Gravelle.

Kohls gave the Rangers their first lead with a powerplay goal set up by Schmidt and Gravelle. With 54 seconds left, Gravelle struck again off assists from Kohls and Franklin. The Raiders cut the lead to one early in the third period before a late goal from JT Jurasin iced it.

Brian Levorson earned the win in net, stopping 18 shots.

Two days later, Forest Lake put 27 shots on goal for the second straight game. However, just two goals made it through the Raptor defense, while four of East Ridge’s 15 shots found the net behind Jesse Garcia.

“I felt that we dominated the pace of play at East Ridge and had our fair share of scoring chances, we just ran into very solid goaltending,” Forsythe said.

Kohls assisted Franklin on a first-period score, and Franklin returned the favor in the second. Both goals tied the game, but East Ridge scored twice in the third period.

Now 10-11-1 overall, the Rangers are 8-7-0 in the Suburban East Conference with three games remaining in the regular season. They are tied for fourth place behind White Bear Lake, Stillwater and Roseville.

“We can’t afford to go into sections giving up four goals a game,” Forsythe said. “That needs to change in a hurry.”

Forest Lake hosts the Bears on Thursday and Hastings on Saturday.

With his next point, Kohls will become the school’s all-time career points leader. He is currently tied with 2000 graduate Bryan Peltier at 118.