Abrahamson scored the lone goal for Devils Lake in loss to West Fargo United.

Devils Lake started its girls hockey game against West Fargo United with a flurry. It also ended the game in one as well. But the spurts didn’t translate into a win.

The Firebirds opened their 2019-20 season losing to the United 3-1 on Tuesday, Nov. 26 from inside Burdick Arena.

“I told the girls that there isn’t anything to hang your heads about. Last year, [we lost to them] 5-0, 6-0. This year, it’s basically 2-1. I’m proud of them but at the same time our expectations as a group is that we have a chance to win here and we didn’t but we have to get back to work,” said Firebirds head coach Rob McIvor.

The Firebirds began the game with two shots on goal within the first 10 seconds. A third shot on goal by Kaylie Klemetsrud two minutes later was saved by United’s goaltender Madelyn Buchert thwarted another potential scoring opportunity during a West Fargo power play.

“I think we came out in the first period with a lot of jump but at some point you have to put the puck in the net,” McIvor said.

Within the 11th minute, West Fargo’s Jocelyn Hareland’s goal off the assist from Alyssa Smith gave the United the lead. A little over two minutes later, Payton Hareland took the ricochet of a Molly Black save and shot the puck into the net for the 2-0 advantage.

Eighth grader Ashlyn Abrahamson’s unassisted goal in the third period pulled the Firebirds within one but a spurt of shot attempts with the clock winding down were missed and eventually led to an empty-netter by Madison Schoenberg with 23 seconds remaining in the game made the final score.

The Firebirds outshot the United 25-22, 20-14 after the opening period. Neither team were able to capitalize on their power play opportunities. Black finished the game with 19 saves and Buchert had 24 saves.

“I thought we played a better defensive game in the second and third period and we really forced their hand,” McIvor said.

The Firebirds return from the brief Thanksgiving break with three games next week, an away contest with Grand Forks on Tuesday, Dec. 3 and consecutive home games with Minot and Williston on Dec. 6th and 7th respectfully. 

West Fargo United at Devils Lake summary

West Fargo 2 0 1 — 3

Devils Lake 0 0 1  — 1

First period_1, West Fargo United, J. Hareland (Smith), 11:17. 2, West Fargo United, P. Hareland, 13:39.

Third period_3, Devils Lake, Abrahamson, 3:54. 4, West Fargo United, Schoenberg, 16:37. 

Shots on goal_West Fargo United 8-5-9_22. Devils Lake 5-11-9_25.

Power-play Opportunities_West Fargo United 0 of 5; Devils Lake 0 of 2.

Goalies_West Fargo United, Buchert 5-11-8 (22 shots-24 saves). Devils Lake, M. Black 6-5-8 (22 shots-19 saves).

Chris Harris can be reached at charris@devilslakejournal.com.