Cat Tiedemann scored twice in the game to bring her season total to 13.

CROOKSTON - Crookston outshot Park Rapids 42-15, but went into overtime after allowing a game-tying goal with five minutes to play. Cat Tiedemann (So. F) erased any idea of an unhappy ending, served up a walk-off goal with 2:19 to play in overtime and the Pirates won 3-2 over the Panthers.

    “It was more of a need to win rather than a want to win,” Tiedemann said. “We had lost a lot a games, and coming into this one, we thought it would be a breeze. There was a lot more pressure, but when it came down to it, we all wanted it a lot more.”

    This season, nothing has been easy for the Crookston Pirates. Crookston owned an 0-3-1 record in overtime games, an 0-4 mark in games decided by one goal and were in the middle of a 10 game losing streak entering their game with Park Rapids.

    More importantly, one of their own, Tiedemann, came into the game with the recent loss of her grandfather, Jim Sims, on her mind. With heavy hearts, the Pirates battled with their teammate for 56-plus minutes and mobbed the hero of the night on the ice after she delivered the game-winner.

    “You couldn’t have written a better ending,” Pirates Head Coach Tim Moe said. “I’m just so happy for [Cat]. We talked in the locker room about how this is a family. We’re there for each other, and we’re there to pick each other up when we have to. Catherine needed us to pick her up emotionally, and she went out and picked us up on the hockey rink as a true leader is supposed to do.”

    Tiedemann tied the game for the Pirates (3-13-1) in the first period with her first goal of the game, and Nora Peterson (So. F) scored in the third period to set up the dramatic finish.

    Goal-scorers on the Panthers’ side were Alexa Kennedy (Sr. C) and Kianna Landt (7th Grade F).

    Kailee Magsam (8th Grade G) earned the nod to start between the pipes for Crookston. Magsam played the first two periods, the majority of the final frame and collected 10 saves. After Park Rapids tied the game at 2-2, Moe elected to sub in Grace Koshney (Sr. G) who saved two shots in the third and one in overtime.

    In the net for Park Rapids (0-16), Kylee Pachel (Sr. G) gave a phenomenal effort and stopped 39 shots on the night.

    The Pirates dominated zone time to start the game, yet could not create quality offensive chances. Crookston survived a Park Rapids power play, but the Panthers scored with 5:21 to play in the first period on Kennedy's goal. The scores served as Park Rapids’ second shot on net compared to Crookston’s six.

    The Panthers could not celebrate long. Eight seconds later, Tiedemann tied the game with her team-leading 12th goal, and her first in five games.

    “You got a player making a play,” Moe said. “Catherine Tiedemann’s been there for us, not just this year, but in previous years. She’s the heart and soul of this team. She’s got that capability in her, and that was just fantastic to see.”

    Crookston fended off the second Panthers' power play which carried over from the first period to the second. After the penalty, the Pirates outshot Park Rapids 15-7 throughout the frame.

    After two periods, Crookston led the shots on goal category 24-9. 

    The repeated attempts finally paid off when Peterson snuck the puck between Pachel and the left pipe for a go-ahead goal with 14:17 to play in the game. Aleah Bienek (Fr. F) and Tiedemann received credit for the assist.

    Crookston killed their third power play of the night and held off the Panthers’ attacks for the next six-plus minutes. But with 4:58 left in the game, luck fell Park Rapids’ way as Landt watched the puck redirect off her skate and go past Magsam to tie the game at 2-2. The assist went to Katie Sagen (Fr. F).

    The Pirates could not score despite playing 5-on-4 for the last 30 seconds of the period, and the game went into overtime.

    Overtime had not been kind to Crookston thus far. In four trips to extra time, the Pirates had yet to emerge victorious with three of those occurring during their losing streak.

    “I just said, ‘we’re okay,’ and, ‘they have to score again to beat us,’” Moe said. “I like who we’ve got, so we just have to keep plugging away and get more shots on net. We had 42 shots on net today. We don’t do that as the Pirates, so that was a positive. As long as we kept working at it, it was going to go in.”

    The final minute and a half of the Crookston power play that began in the third period ended with the game still tied and 6:30 to play. A minute later, Tiedemann committed a cross-check, but Park Rapids negated their power play opportunity 20 seconds later with a penalty of their own.

    Crookston appeared to be on their way to a their second tie of the season when Tiedemann grabbed the puck in the neutral zone and found no one between her and the opposing goalie, Pachel.

    Tiedemann approached the net, reared back and fired a shot to the right of Pachel. The shot hit the pipe and ricocheted in to send the Crookston bench into a frenzy. Tiedemann’s second goal of the night and lucky number 13 on the year awarded the Pirates the win.

    Kendall Bergquist (Fr. F) contributed with the assist.

    “I started laughing during my breakaway,” Tiedemann said. “I was like, ‘I better make this. Otherwise, I’ll be very mad tonight.’”

    Crookston will look to win two in a row for the first time this season when they play Mandan in an official home game in Mayville, N.D. on Friday, January 18. Puck drops at 5 p.m.

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For feedback or questions, contact the Times at (218) 281-2730, Nolan Beilstein at (940) 372-8175 or by email at nbeilstein@crookstontimes.com.