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Crookston Times - Crookston, MN
  • Boys' hockey: Klatt’s 2 goals, lifts Pirates over Bearcats 6-2

  • Pirate senior Ryan Edevold and junior Brady Heppner each had a goal and two assists.
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  • Senior wing Dylan Klatt buried two goals as the Pirates, seeded No. 4, buried Kittson County Central, seeded fifth, Thursday 6-2 in the Section 8A quarterfinals in Crookston.
     
    Pirate senior Ryan Edevold and junior Brady Heppner each had a goal and two assists.
     
    "We came out flying tonight," Heppner said. "Playing with Eddy (Edevold) and Connor (Morgan) is fun. We always get to the net. Last year in the quarterfinals with Park Rapids, we didn't want to get upset again."
     
    Pirate head coach Jon Bittner thought his team got stronger as the game went on.
     
    "We were a little rusty after the nine-day layoff," he said. "We did get better as the game went on. Edevold's goal was huge, getting on the board first. We had good puck movement."
     
    Junior goalie Parker Epema recorded 17 saves for the victory. Bearcat goalie Tucker Cosley was peppered with 43 shots and saved 37 of them.
     
    "Parker played fine. He made big saves," said coach Bittner. "Parker made some plays on some good scoring opportunities in the slot and in front of the net. He made saves that allowed us to regain our composure."
     
    Edevold put the Pirates on the board at the 3:22 mark of the first period with his 19th goal of the season with assists from his linemates, Heppner and Morgan.
     
    Klatt then buried a wrister from the high slot at the 8:16 mark.
     
    Billy Thorsteinson put the Bearcats on the board at 9:08, but the Pirates answered about two minutes later when senior wing Ethan Mercil capitalized on a tic-tac-toe play from the left circle with assists from his linemates, seniors Curtis Regan and Kyle Proulx.
     
    Crookston extended its lead in the second period with Heppner's 26th of the season when he was fed a pass from Edevold in the corner and buried a one-timer from the slot at the 8:26 mark. Morgan then added his ninth of the season at the 12:01 mark from Heppner and Edevold.
     
    Kittson Central made it 5-2 early in the third on a goal by Joey Pastir at 2:15.
     
    Klatt buried any chance of a Bearcat comeback, though, with his 11th goal of the season at the 8:21 mark of the third with a one-timer in the slot on assists from his linemates, freshman Doug Larson and sophomore Chandler St. Michel.
     
    St. Michel returned to the ice after missing a handful of the final regular season games with an injury.
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    The Pirates are joined in the semifinals by the other top three seeds and will face top seeded East Grand Forks Saturday at 6 p.m. in East Grand Forks. No. 3 Warroad will face No. 2 Thief River Falls at 8:15 p.m., also in East Grand Forks.
     
    "We need to come out flying like tonight," Heppner said about facing the Green Wave. "We know their strategies. We just need to play with them speed-wise."
     
    Bittner said of rival East Grand Forks, "they are a very good hockey team and it should be a whale of a hockey game."

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