Raider Girls Hockey Earn Third Straight Shutout Win

Macy Mueller's 3rd straight shutout keeps Raiders in hunt for Conference Title.

By Nick Gerhardt

As the postseason approaches, Northfield looks primed for the playoffs.

The Class 2A No. 17-ranked Raiders looked the part Tuesday at Northfield Ice Arena in a 3-0 over Class A No. 13-ranked Mankato East for their third straight shutout victory.  

Northfield (14-6, 7-1 Big 9) got goals from eighth-grader winger Emma Peroutka, junior center Ayla Puppe and ninth-grade defender Mia Miller to remain in the hunt for a conference title. The Raiders will need some help to catch Owatonna (13-6, 9-1 Big 9) but the two will meet in the regular season finale Feb. 4 at Northfield Ice Arena.

“We just managed the game better today,” Northfield head coach Paige Haley said. “It felt a little more like a section-type game. I just asked them to be disciplined with their game management.”

Northfield fought through adversity in the second period to get the win against the Cougars (14-6, 5-3 Big 9) after killing a 5-on-3 penalty that lasted nearly three minutes.

With senior winger Tove Sorenson already serving a tripping penalty, Puppe and Megan Snyder both got whistled for penalties. Sorenson had 56 seconds left on her penalty while Puppe served the first penalty. Mankato East remained on the power play for another two minutes while Snyder served her penalty. 

The Cougars got six shots on Raiders goalie Macy Mueller during the power play and Mueller earned her third straight and seventh overall shutout of the season. Mueller delivered a sterling 42-save shutout performance last Thursday in a 1-0 win over Class 2A No. 12-ranked Benilde-St. Margaret’s in St. Louis Park.

“She told me she’s dialed,” Haley said. “She’s confident. She’s done a really good job as a sophomore being our starting goaltender. She’s had some pretty big games, heavy games, that have made her tired. I’ve been really proud of how she’s played all year.” 

Miller stayed on the ice for the majority of the nearly five-minute penalty kill in the second period, slightly outlasting junior defender Grace McCoshen. 

“It goes fast,” said Miller, who got rewarded later on with a goal in the third period.

After Northfield finally got to full strength in the second period, Peroutka scored the game’s first goal at the 10 minute, 28 second mark after she sent in a rebound. Her linemates Puppe and junior winger Emerson Garlie assisted on the goal, her seventh of the season.

“It’s her first year on the team as an eighth-grader so she really reminds me of myself because I used to play with Jess Boland when I was an eighth-grader,” Puppe said of Peroutka. “It’s really fun to build our chemistry. She’s the first player who’s lasted on our line for more than a couple of games.”

Puppe followed with a power-play goal 54 seconds into the third period on a shot from the left circle over the blocker of Mankato East goaltender Annaliese Rader for a 2-0 lead.

Miller later found a goal from nearly the same spot on the ice and the goal as she also went blockerside on an unassisted goal for a 3-0 lead.

The Raiders outshot the Cougars 38-12 for the game with Mueller turning away all 12 shots she faced.

Northfield faces Class A No. 14-ranked Albert Lea Thursday at Northfield Ice Arena.

Megan Snyder with an absolute snipe.