MARQUETTE - The Marquette Senior High School hockey team battled the No. 12-ranked team in the state all game long, but the Redmen still came up short Friday night.
Coach Mike L'Huillier's club dropped a 2-1 overtime decision to Grosse Point North in the 14th Annual Redmen Hockey Classic at Lakeview Arena.
"It was our best overall team effort all year," L'Huillier said after his squad had dropped to a 2-6 record. "Our defense moved the puck, we were good in transition, but we're still giving up too many shots (on net)."
Marquette Senior High School’s Brett Specker (13) brings the puck up the ice as Grosse Point North’s Vince Romanelli (20) tries to steal the puck during the first period at the Lakeview Arena in Marquette on Friday. (Journal photo by Zach Jay)
The Norsemen (6-4) outshot the Redmen 34-11, with Jeff Herron scoring the game-winning goal at the 5:41 mark of overtime off an MSHS turnover.
"It was just a bad pass (in our zone)," L'Huillier lamented.
Forest Folker, who notched Marquette's lone goal, said the winning marker came on a "mishap" in the MSHS zone.
"They got the turnover and capitalized on it with a top shelf shot," he said.
Folker gave MSHS a 1-0 lead just 3:25 into the game. He picked up a loose puck in the Norsemen zone and rifled a wrist shot past GPN goalie Tanner Colberg.
"(A GPN player) looked to pass and I got the puck on my stick," he said of his goal. "I shot bottom right.
"Our effort was good and we forechecked hard. It was by far our best game. Statistically speaking, we were supposed to get blown out."
Jack Guest tied the score for GPN with a shorthanded tally at 10:24 of the second period. His wrist shot beat MSHS goaltender Evan Kyle - who made 32 saves on the night - after the Redmen turned the puck over in their defensive zone.
"Their goalie pushed us," said GPN head coach Scott Lock, whose team is ranked No. 6 in Division 1, but No. 12 overall. "We gave up only 11 shots, but I think it was a sloppy game on both ends.
"Marquette worked hard and had a chance to win. But we were fortunate to win.
"After being off for 2 1/2 weeks, we played pond hockey tonight instead of our structure and system," he added. "There was a little too much individualism tonight."
Kyle kept the Redmen in the game. He made top stops on Guest and Joe Wright in the first period, turned aside 15 shots in the second and beat Brendan Keelan in the third.
"Evan was sensational," L'Huillier said. "He wants to play all the time and gets really upset when he loses.
"We just have to generate more offense."
The Redmen will play De Pere (Wis.) at 3 p.m. today at Lakeview after GPN takes on De Pere at 11 a.m.
Craig Remsburg can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 251. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org