Eagles’ goalie O’Connor commits to River Falls Falcons

Jordan O’Connor has some other things to accomplish first, but this fall, the Sauk Prairie Eagles’ senior goaltender will begin her college career as a freshman goaltender on the UW-River Falls Falcons NCAA Division 3 Women’s Hockey team.

On Tuesday, O’Connor will suit up for her final

Jordan O’Connor gets the glove up to block a Middleton Cardinals shot in the regular season finale for the Eagles at SPARC Saturday afternoon.

playoff run with the Sauk Prairie Eagles varsity hockey team and if the post season is anything like the regular season, there will be plenty of excitement.

Despite a loss on home ice to wrap up the regular season, the Eagles collected 19 wins this season and O’Connor, who enters the playoffs ranked sixth in state in Goals Against (1.48 GAA) has been in the blue paint for all of them.

I was in contact with a lot of D3 schools,” said O’Connor at the regular season finale against Middleton Saturday. “But I went to River Falls two years ago. When I visited it was just amazing. (It was) a good environment and everyone was so welcoming, so I knew that’s where I wanted to go.”

O’Connor said she is still undecided on a major, but said she is leaning toward a STEM (Science/Technology/Engineering/Mathematics).

By staying in state and playing in the WIAC conference, O’Connor’s family and friends will get a chance to see many of her games without traveling far.

“Yeah, I wanted to stay in Wisconsin,” said O’Connor.

First though, an Eagles team coming off likely the best season in school history is looking to go deep into the post season as well. This is the season many of the team’s eight seasons have been gearing up for since beginning their High School careers.

Our freshman year we, us freshmen, were leading the team, my teammates were leading in points and goals so from the end of that season we’ve all been looking forward to our senior season.

There are a bunch of key players, this is the season we’ve been looking forward to. The loss in the last game o the regular season is kind of sad, but (there’s still the playoffs).”

O’Connor is a three-sport athlete with the Eagles so the skates and goalie pads will go away briefly after the season ends allowing her to focus on one final season with the varsity girls’ soccer team where she generally plays either defense or midfield.

She is not planning to play in the boys’ or girls’ senior tournament this spring but says she will likely play some sort of off-season hockey in preparation for her start at River Falls in the fall.

Late goal lifts Cardinals past Eagles in season finale

The Middleton Cardinals spoiled the finish to an

Sauk Prairie senior Lance Bauernhuber battles Middleton junior Lance Baltes off a faceoff in the first period of their game at SPARC Saturdday afternoon. Looking on from behind for the Eagles is senior Dylan Andrews.

awesome regular season for the Sauk Prairie Eagles varsity hockey team and snapped their four-game winning streak with a 3-2 edge at Sauk Prairie Area Recreation Center (SPARC) Saturday afternoon.

The Eagles couldn’t have had a better start to the game as the state’s leading point-getter, Riley Jelinek converted a feed from Nick Mast just 18 seconds in to get the Eagles on the board first. Senior Cam Desroches also collected an assist.

The lead didn’t last long though as Cardinals’ senior Jake Jorden notched the equalizer just 64 seconds later.

The Cardinals scored the lone goal of the second period, senior Brian Frusicante pulling the trigger.

Desroches slammed home a pass from Jelinek who collected his 85th and final point of the regular season to tie it up 7:16 into the final period but the game winner came from freshman Garrett Ballweg with 5:53 to play.

The Eagles held a 33-19 edge in shots overall, including a 12-4 edge in the final period.

The loss, just the second on home ice for the Eagles this season will see their quest for a 20-W campaign carrying into the post season as they wrap up a nonetheless awesome 19-4-1 season.

The Eagle will open the post season as the number four seed in Section 3, beginning on home ice against the Madison Lafollette/Madison East Lakers. The winner of that contest will advance to play either Madison West Regents or Deforest Norskies on either Thursday or Friday. If the Eagles win, that Sectional quarterfinal match will also be a home game.