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Put Warroad on repeat as Warriors win Class A championship once again

The Warriors earn a 3-1 victory over third-seeded Orono to bring the girls program its fourth state title

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Warroad players celebrate their State Title win against Orono Saturday, Feb. 25, 2023, during the State Hockey Tournament at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
Jason Wachter / The Rink Live

ST. PAUL — The Warroad Warriors are back-to-back state girls hockey champions in Class A after posting a 3-1 win over third-seeded Orono on Saturday night at the Xcel Energy Center. The victory gives the team its fourth state title in girls hockey.

"I'm not gonna lie, the last five minutes of the game was the longest five minutes of my life," joked Warroad senior captain Talya Hendrickson after the game.


2023: Warroad
2022: Warroad
2021: Proctor-Hermantown
2020: Breck
2019: Breck
2018: Breck
2017: Blake School

"It's an honor to be a Warrior ... it's amazing to put on the jersey and know who you're playing for; the community, my friends, family, everyone that's out there watching, and I think we all know that we got to play with respect, like respecting the jersey and you know, keeping it classy," she added. "We just got to play for the community and that's really an honor."

The Warriors gave themselves an early 1-0 lead as star forward Rylee Bartz (St. Thomas) skated down the wing on a two-on-one opportunity and ripped the puck clean past Orono goaltender Celia Dahl (Endicott). Talya Hendrickson (Bemidji State) earned the primary assist on the play to earn her 100th point of the season.

Just a few minutes later, the Spartans scored their lone goal of the game as sophomore Zoe Lopez shot a puck past Kate Stephens from the high slot.


Warroad doubled their lead in the second frame as Kate Johnson (Bemidji State) forced a turnover behind the Orono goal and passed the puck over to Hendrickson who scored from in front of the crease.

The Warriors netted a third goal as Kaiya Sandy used her speed to get to the puck all alone on a breakaway opportunity and slid it past netminder Dahl.

That would be all Warroad needed to earn their fourth Class A title, with the last one coming in 2022. The win marks the end of a very successful season for the 10 seniors on the roster and a win for head coach David 'Izzy' Marvin over his friend and former teammate Larry Olimb, the head coach at Orono.

"I have so many great memories growing up in Warroad, and so it was special, it really was, but at the same time it was our girls, you know, it was all about them today and this week," said Olimb on playing against his hometown team.

"I had just a fabulous season, I was really fortunate to fall into this group last summer and I'm glad they brought me along for the ride. It was a fantastic season," he added.

Minnesota State High School Hockey Tournament coverage including game recaps, photos, brackets, schedules and more from The Rink Live



Warroad, 1-2-0—3
Orono, 1-0-0—1

First period scoring — 1. WAR, Rylee Bartz (Talya Hendrickson, Katy Comstock) 7:05; 1. ORO, Zoe Lopez (Grace Bickett, Alexa Niccum) 12:38
Penalties — ORO, Lopez (head contact) 8:03

Second period scoring — 2. WAR, Hendrickson (Kate Johnson) 5:54; 3. WAR, Kaiya Sandy (Lila Lanctot) 12:21
Penalties — None

Third period scoring — None
Penalties — WAR, Lexi Kirkeby (hooking) 2:02; WAR, Katy Comstock (hooking) 6:54; WAR, Kate Johnson (tripping) 13:48

SOG — WAR, 7-10-6—25; ORO, 3-4-3—15

Goalie Saves — WAR, Kate Stephens 2-4-8—14 (1GA); ORO, Celia Dahl 6-8-8—22 (3GA)

Penalties-minutes — WAR, 3-6; ORO, 1-2
Power-play goals-opportunities — WAR, 0-1; ORO, 0-3

Orono vs Warroad_0879.jpg
Warroad forward Kaiya Sandy (9) scores on Orono goaltender Celia Dahl (30) in the second period Saturday, Feb. 25, 2023, during the State Hockey Tournament at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
Jason Wachter / The Rink Live

Sydney Wolf is a reporter for The Rink Live, primarily covering youth and high school hockey. She joined the team in November of 2021 and graduated from St. Cloud State University with a degree in Mass Communications and a minor in Writing and Rhetoric Studies.
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