By Jim den Hollander
Badger Lightning varsity girls hockey team faced a race two games in one day challenge Saturday with a road trip into Central/North Wisconsin.
First up, the Lightning faced off against a tough Northland Pines Team in Eagle River falling 7-0 in an afternoon contest before moving on to Rhinelander for an evening game against the Northern Edge where the Lightning led early and charged back in the third but ultimately fell a goal shy in a 3-2 loss.
Badger Lightning 0 @ Northland Pines Eagles 7
The first game brought an end to an impressive season opening streak for Bella Bowden who scored in each of the team’s first three games.
The Eagles grabbed control quick on home ice opening the scoring 54 seconds in and up 2-0 by the two-minute mark.
Two more had the Eagles in front 4-0 after a period with another pair in the second and the Lightning limited them to just one in the third.
Freshman goaltender Alyssa Gada was the busiest player on the ice, facing 46 Eagles shots in the contest while the Lightning was limited to just eight.
The Eagles moved to 2-1 on the season with the win and added a 7-1 win against Medford Tuesday as well.
Badger Lightning 2 @ Northern Edge 3
Signe Begalske connected for the Lightning 2:51 into the game at Rhinelander, taking a feed from Kayla Capener. The home team struck back to tie it in the ninth minute and grabbed its first and only lead about three minutes later.
Another goal in the final minute of the middle period padded the home team’s margin but Bowden found the net for the fourth time in four games, unassisted with 4:26 to play to make the finish a little more exciting.
The Lightning unfortunately failed to net the equalizer in their best offensive period of the weekend as they matched the Edge with 10-shots apiece.
Once again Gada was peppered with shots facing another 52 in the contest including a middle period that saw her kicking out 23 of 24 Rhinelander chances.
The Edge evened its season record to 2-2 with the win while the Lightning fell to 1-3. Since then the Edge dropped a 10-0 decision to Wisconsin Valley Union (Stevens Point)
The Lightning enjoys a week off but is in the middle of a five-game stretch on the road, heading to Brookfield to play the Glacier on Saturday. In a previous meeting at Pierce Park Pavilion Dec. 5, the Lightning collected a 5-2 win.