Begalske leads Lightning to four weekend wins

By Jim den Hollander 


This must be a first in WIAA hockey history. The Badger Lightning varsity hockey team turned a six-game losing streak into a four-game winning streak in 24 hours this past weekend (Jan. 28-29). 

The team made the trip to Beaver Dam Family Ice Center and picked up an 11-0 shutout against the host Golden Beavers Friday night. 

After spending the night in Beaver Dam, the team returned to ice and collected three wins Saturday, 6-1 and 4-2 against the Medford Raiders and another shutout against the host Golden Beavers 7-0. 

Lightning 11 Golden Beavers 0 

Best thing about the opening contest of the weekend was probably the array of players collecting points. 

The Lightning carried a 3-0 lead out of the opening period and piled on another five in the middle frame before wrapping it up with three more down the stretch. 

 Six different shooters scored in the contest, led by senior Signe Begalske who continued her awesome season with three goals and an assist.   

Junior Kayla Capener, senior defender Carson Blosenski and first-year Kayla Garbacz each scored twice, Capener also picking up four set ups in the match.  

Another first-year, Reese Olson scored a goal with an assist as well, the other goal scored by sophomore Madchen Ewig along with an assist and junior Lily McPherson had an assist as well.  

Sophomore goaltender Alyssa Gada kicked out the six shots fired at her to pick up her second shutout of the season.  

Lightning 6 Raiders 1 

The girls kicked off a three-game Saturday, scoring two unanswered first period goals and outscored the Raiders 3-1 in the second before adding one more in the final 17.

This time Olson stepped up for the offense with her first varsity hat trick, Begalske adding a goal and three assists while Capener also set up three.  

Other goals came from Junior defender Eryn Benson and senior Emily Gunnell, Benson adding an assist.  

Blosenski also had a helper and Gada kicked out 15 of 16 shots she faced.  

Lightning 7 Golden Beavers 0  

In the middle game Saturday, the Lightning and Gada picked up its second goose egg of the weekend, the goaltender stopping four to grab the win.  

Lightning outshot its host 39-4 and that paid off with three unanswered first period goals and two in both the second and final periods. 

Olson and Begalske continued their torrid pace with two goals and an assist each, Capener adding a goal and two helpers.  

Other goals came from Benson and McPherson who also picked up an assist.  

Blosenski and first-year Audrey Hanko collected assists in the game. 

Lightning 4 Raiders 2  

The final game was the closest, but despite the heavy workload, the Lightning still controlled the contest, outscoring Medford 2-1 in the first and second periods and playing through a scoreless final frame.  

Gada allowed just three goals and 12 periods, stopping another 10 to pick up her fourth straight win. 

Begalske picked up her seventh and eighth goals of the weekend and Capener notched a goal and assist. The other goal came from Ewig with single assists for Blosenski and McPherson. 

The wins boosted the Lightning’s overall mark to 9-8 and the Lightning was scheduled to play again Tuesday (Feb. 1) at Pierce Park Pavilion, a 7 p.m. start against the Warbirds (11-6-1, 4-2-1 Eastern Shores Conference).  

That will leave the team with four games to play beginning Thursday against the Cap City Cougars (10-10, 6-3 Badger Conference). 

By Jim den Hollander 


Tuesday’s home game wasn’t a win, but a clear sign, the Badger Lightning is knocking on the door of becoming a mid-pack team in the Badger Conference. 

Playing a rare home night in at the Sauk Prairie Area Recreation Center (SPARC), the Lightning dropped a 3-2 decision to the Viroqua Blackhawks who swept the season Badger Conference series after a 4-1 win in Viroqua in December.  

The win was also the 11th consecutive win for the Blackhawks against the Lightning, but following 6-3 and 11-3 losses to the same team a year ago, the local Co-op is clearly heading in the right direction.  

Teams were even at 1-1 after a period and 2-2 heading to the third, Blackhawks Junior Cadence Dehlin snaring the game winner with 2:36 to play in the contest.  

Junior Kayla Capener fired both goals for the Lightning, her 10th and 11th of the season while senior Signe Begalske, playing in front of her home crowd, set up both goals. Defender Eryn Benson also collected an assist.  

Juniors Leonie Boettcher and Rachel Simonson scored the other two Blackhawks’ goals.

Sophomore goaltender Alyssa Gada stopped all but three of the 39 shots she faced as the Blackhawks held a 39-28 edge overall on the shot counter. 

The loss dropped the Lightning to 4-9 on the season and extended its current losing skid to six games, going back to Dec. 21. 

The Lightning have nine games remaining on its schedule but will knock four off this weekend with two games each against Beaver Dam Golden Beavers and Medford Raiders in Beaver Dam. The team’s losing streak will almost for sure end in that stretch as well.  

Next home game for the Lightning will be Thursday (Feb. 3) when the Cap City Cougars pay a visit. 

State conteding Lynx handle Lightning

By Jim den Hollander  


The Badger Lightning varsity hockey team entertained the Metro Lynx Monday (Jan. 24) at Pierce Park Pavilion and found out the talent level of one of the state’s top teams.  

Ranked in the state’s top six all season long, the Lynx grabbed a 4-0 first period lead and never looked back on its way to an 8-0 win. 

The Lynx went to work in the first period scoring three times in 1:58 in the middle of the period on its way to a 4-0 first period cushion, adding two more in the second and third frames. 

Lightning sophomore Alyssa Gada was kept busy with a shots margin of 43-8 for the visitors. 

Pacing the Lynx was junior Anna Faulkner with two goals and an assist while senior Ally Jacobsen added a goal and two helpers.  

The loss dropped the Lightning to 4-8 in regular season play and 3-6 in Badger Conference contests. Next up for the Lightning will be a home Conference game against the Viroqua Blackhawks at Sauk Prairie Area Recreation Center (SPARC) on Tuesday (Jan. 25) followed by five straight road contests that will carry the team into February. 

The Lightning has a total of 10 games to play before the regular season ends on Feb. 11. 

Lightning returns from long layoff in Tomah

By Jim den Hollander  


The Badger Lightning varsity hockey team played for the first time in two weeks, playing host to the Black River Falls Tigers and falling 7-0 at the Mose Lamb Hockey Rink in Tomah Friday (Jan. 21). 

The host Tigers fired one goal in the opening period and piled on three more in both the second and third to clinch the win. On the shot clock, the Tigers held a 24-20 edge and the Lightning gained some consolation with a 9-7 edge in the final period.  

Sophomore Zowie Hunter paced the Tigers with two goals and two helpers.  

The loss dropped the Lightning to 4-7 in the regular season standing and extended the team’s current losing streak to four games. 

The Lightning will be on home ice Monday (Jan. 24) with a Badger Conference contest against the Metro Lynx, the conference’s top entry so far. With games postponed earlier this season, the Lightning has 11 games to play between now and Feb. 11. 

Olson sinks lone goal in 3-1 Lightning loss

By Jim den Hollander  


The Badger Lightning varsity hockey team scored its first goal in three games on Friday (Jan. 7) but it wasn’t enough to snap its losing streak dropping a 3-1 decision to the Rock County Fury at Pierce Park Pavilion.  

The game was the first home game for the locals since Dec. 21 and the second meeting with the Fury who earned a 2-1 edge in Beloit at the beginning of December.  

Once again, the Lightning stayed with the Fury, but just couldn’t find the mesh until late in the contest.  

Senior Olivia Combs put the Fury up with the lone goal of the opening period and that stood up until the final frame when sophomore Hannah Chady sank the game winner at the 8:07 mark.  

Sophomore Lily Clark added one more for the Fury before first year Reese Olson denied Olivia Cronin, the Fury’s senior goaltender a shutout, lighting the lamp 75 seconds from the final buzzer.  

Senior Signe Begalske and junior Kayla Capener collected assists on the goal.  

The Fury held a 30-24 edge on the shot clock and snapped a seven-game winless streak dating back to Dec. 10. The win boosted the team’s overall record to 5-8-2 and the Fury sits at 3-3.  

For the Lightning who have now dropped three in a row, fell to 4-6 with the loss and they fell to 3-5 in Badger Conference play. 

Badger Lightning faces off new season Thursday

By Jim den Hollander


The Badger Lightning varsity girls hockey team which includes players from several area high schools, will open its 2020-21 regular season Thursday on home ice at Pierce Park Pavilion in Baraboo.

The Lightning will open with a match against Badger Conference rival, the Viroqua Blackhawks with a 7 p.m. puck drop.

The game will be a replay of 2019-20 which also opened against the Hawks, but at Viroqua, the home team pulling out a 6-3 win. The score was identical when the Lightning played host in mid-January again at the Lake Delton Ice Arena.

Due to Covid restrictions, Pierce Park does not allow spectators. However, the game will be streamed online at

The Lightning is also scheduled to play host to the Brookfield Glacier from the Eastern Shores Conference Saturday in a another contest at Pierce Park Pavilion. The two did not faceoff against each other last season.