December 4, 2018 @ St. Croix Rec. Center 7:30
Hill-Murray won the first important Metro East game, scoring three unanswered goals to erase a 3-1 second period deficit.
The teams exchanged early first period goals on fortuitous bounces off the back boards that were jammed in at the side of the net. With the score 1-1 and Mahtomedi on a power play, a shot from the blue line hit a leg in front of the net and caromed onto Joe Paradise's stick at the top of the left circle. Paradise sent the puck straight back into the net for his second goal of the period.
Three minutes into the second, Colin Hagstrom stole the puck at the blue line and scored a breakaway goal to put Mahtomedi up 3-1. Hill-Murray had the territorial advantage for most of the period but nothing to show for it until a breakaway in the waning seconds. Nick Pierre was tripped but somehow managed to regain control of the puck behind the net and fed Henry Eischen for a nice goal from close range with 12 seconds left in the period.
Eischen and Charlie Strobel won a puck battle in the corner and Eischen set up Pierre in the slot for the tying goal 4:44 into the third. Four minutes later, both teams had 2-on-1s in quick succession. Mahtomedi missed; Hill-Murray scored, Eischen coverting Pierre's centering pass. The Pioneers played keep-away until Mahtomedi pulled their goalie and spent the final minute in the Hill-Murray zone. Remington Keopple kicked out a final open shot with 20 seconds remaining and the Pioneers held on for a 4-3 victory.
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