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Andover scores on a rush, beats Moorhead 2-1 in 2 OTs

Huskies get a goal from Gavyn Thoreson at 11:18 of the second overtime off a turnover in the neutral zone

Moorhead vs Andover_0001 (2).jpg
Andover forward Gavyn Thoreson (12) launches the puck over the shoulder of Moorhead goaltender Kai Weigel (31) to score the winning goal in double overtime Thursday, March 10, 2022, in the Minnesota Class AA State Boys Hockey Tournament at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
Jason Wachter / The Rink Live

ST. PAUL — The Andover boys hockey team looked like it had scored the go-ahead goal in both the third period and the overtime.

Finally, in the second overtime, the Huskies got the game-winner.

Junior forward Gavyn Thoreson scored on a rush when he redirected a pass with his backhand at 11:18 of the second overtime to give Andover a 2-1 win over Moorhead on Thursday night in the Class AA boys state hockey quarterfinals at Xcel Energy Center.

With the win, fifth-seeded Andover (23-5-1) plays top-seeded Hill-Murray (24-4-1) at 8 p.m. Friday in the state semifinals. Moorhead (21-7-1) plays Lakeville South (25-4-0) at 11 a.m. Friday at 3M Arena at Mariucci in the consolation semifinals.

The play that set up the game-winning goal began in the neutral zone when Cayden Casey stole a pass. He skated it up the left side and then hit Thoreson on the stick as he was going to the net and it went under the crossbar for the game-winner and his team-leading 26th goal of the season.


"I made eye contact with him when we were going down the ice and he knew what he was doing," Thoreson said of Casey. "We do a drill in practice called 'Stiff Stick' and we do that every day. We go hard to the net and tip it in."

"If your bottom hand is loose on the stick, it will just pop away," Andover coach Mark Manney said. "You have to grip it tight with your bottom hand in order to steer that into the net."

On the replay, it looked as though Thoreson was fully extended and just got his stick on it for the redirect past goalie goalie Kai Weigel.

"I don't even remember what happened — I blacked out," Thoreson said.

Moorhead coach Jon Ammerman had an appreciation for the level of play in the game, even though the Spuds did not come out on top.

"The game kind of had everything," Ammerman said. "Very entertaining. Obviously, disappointing for us. It was an outstanding high school hockey game between two very good teams and some very, very good hockey players.

"That was a great play at the end by some pretty good players to win the game," Ammerman said. "Unfortunately, we didn't come out on top."

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Moorhead forward Wyatt Tweet (20) crashes into Andover goaltender Austin Brauns (1) after taking a shot during the first period Thursday, March 10, 2022, in the State Boys Hockey Tournament at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
Jason Wachter / The Rink Live

In the eight-minute first overtime, Weigel made a save and the puck ended up laying behind him but in front of the goal line. Andover senior Logan Gravink knocked it into the net with 1:44 left, but the play had been blown dead by the referee before the puck crossed the goal line.


The game was also nearly decided in regulation. Andover went into the Moorhead zone on a 3-on-4 rush. The puck was passed to Andover's Cayden Casey, who was alone, driving to the net. Casey knocked the puck past Weigel with 16.3 seconds left.

But after a video review, the goal was negated because it was determined that Casey kicked the puck into the net.

"He was driving hard to the net, as hard as he could and he reached for it with his stick," said Manney, who was upset after the goal was overturned. "When he didn't get it with his stick, he turned his foot to try to catch it and it went in the net. The standard in the rule book that I have in my back pocket says that it's got to be deliberately directed or kicked into the net.

"We might do a Stiff Stick drill, but we sure don't do a go full speed and turn our foot and intentionally direct it into the net. I don't know anybody who could do that. He was just trying to catch a pass ... We wanted that one and we'd already be eating pizza now."

Casey agreed with Manney.

"I went for it with my stick and then I ended up missing the puck," Casey said. "I ended up catching it with my foot and it just happened to go into the net."

Moorhead vs Andover_0423.jpg
Moorhead forward Aaron Reierson (22) takes a shot at Andover goaltender Austin Brauns (1) during the first period Thursday, March 10, 2022, in the State Boys Hockey Tournament at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
Jason Wachter / The Rink Live

The game was tied 1-1 going into the third period.

Andover took a 1-0 lead on a goal with a persistent forecheck. Moorhead's Gavin Lindberg blocked a shot in the slot by Thoreson, but the puck bounced over to Cooper Conway, who knocked the loose puck past Weigel at 5:47.


Moorhead tied the game at 1-1 on a 3-on-2 rush. Lindberg skated up the left side and hit junior wing Harper Bentz with a cross-ice pass. Bentz scored his 38th goal of the season on a shot from near the faceoff dot that went over the glove of goalie Austin Brauns at 10:39.

"The first and second period, I thought we had the better of the play," said Ammerman, whose team outshot Andover 29-14 in the first two periods. "In the second period, I thought we had 2-3 chances that were difference makers in the game. One (shot) hits a stick, one or two there are scrambles (in front of the net) and they're able to clear.

"In the third period, the momentum shifts a little bit. The disallowed goal adds some intrigue. The game kind of had everything."

The game was scoreless going into the second period. Moorhead held a 10-4 advantage in shots with the help of two power plays.

Andover 2, Moorhead 1, 2 OTs

Andover 0-1-0-0-1—2
Moorhead 0-1-0-0-0—1

First period scoring — None. Penalties — A, Cayden Casey (slashing) 11:42; A, Landon Stringfellow (holding) 14:21.

Second period scoring — 1. A, Cooper Conway 12 (Gavyn Thoreson 42, Casey 47) 5:47; 2. M, Harper Bentz 38 (Gavin Lindberg 44, Joe Grammer 21) 10:39. Penalties — None.

Third period scoring — None. Penalties — M, Grammer (interference) 9:01.


First overtime scoring — None. Penalties — M, Colby Krier (hooking) 10:30.

Second overtime scoring — 3. A, Thoreson 26 (Mason Gilmore) 11:18. Penalties — None.

Goalie saves — A, Austin Brauns 10-18-9-2-5—44 (1 GA). M, Kai Weigel 4-9-6-8-4—31 (2 GA).

Penalties-minutes — A 2-4; M 2-4.

Power play goals-opportunities (shots) — A 0-2 (5 shots); M 0-2 (4 shots).

Faceoffs — M 50-31.

Referees — Jason Bergeron, Chad Theisen.

Linesmen — Mark Germain, Adam Knutson.


PHOTO GALLERY (swipe/click to view)

Follow the Minnesota boys hockey postseason with state tournament information and brackets from every section.

Mick Hatten is a reporter and editor for Forum News Service and helps manage TheRinkLive.com, a website dedicated to hockey. He began working for Forum Communications in November 2018 and has covered St. Cloud State University hockey since 2010. A graduate of St. Cloud State, he has more than 30 years of experience as a journalist and has been a youth hockey coach since 2014. mhatten@forumcomm.com

For more coverage of St. Cloud and the surrounding communities, check out St. Cloud Live.
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