Blaze’s Coleman having a hot start

Burnsville forward has 18 points through five games

Senior forward Lindsey Coleman is having a torrid start for the Burnsville girls hockey team with 18 points in the Blaze’s first five games.

Coleman, who recently signed to play for Minnesota State, Mankato, had three goals and three assists in Burnsville’s season-opening 8-4 victory over Hastings and scored another hat trick in a 6-1 victory over Rosemount two days later. She has scored twice in each of Burnsville’s last three games and has 12 goals and six assists for the season.

Burnsville is 3-2 overall after losing to Edina 7-2 on Tuesday night at Burnsville Ice Center. The game was to be a homecoming of sorts for Edina coach Laura Slominski, a former Blaze player. Slominski, however, is taking a one-year leave of absence after injuring her neck while playing hockey on Sept. 29. Dean Williamson is the Hornets’ interim coach.

Briita Nelson (five goals, eight assists) and Paige Skaja (four goals, seven assists) are Burnsville’s second- and third-leading scorers. The Coleman-Nelson-Skaja trio has scored all but four of the Blaze’s goals so far for new head coach Tracy Cassano, who returns to the South Suburban Conference after coaching the Chaska-Chanhassen co-op team the last two seasons. Cassano previously was Rosemount’s head coach.

Lauren Bench has played every minute in goal for Burnsville and has a 3.40 goals-against average through five games.

The Wildcats will be looking for their first victory when they play at Park of Cottage Grove at 7:30 p.m. Thursday. Eagan was 0-3-1 after losing to Benilde-St. Margaret’s 8-2 on Tuesday night.

BSM is ranked first in Class AA by Let’s Play Hockey. Eagan earned a 3-3 tie with No. 5 Edina on Nov. 14, overcoming a three-goal deficit. Brooke Madsen, Rachel Wall and Anna Krueger scored to highlight Eagan’s comeback. Krueger scored the game-tying goal with 1:21 left in the third period.

Wall and Madsen led the Wildcats in goals with two each. Krueger was the team’s leading scorer with one goal and two assists. Katelyn Vrieze had a 3.75 goals-against average through four games.

Eagan, under the direction of co-head coaches Kallie Cummings and Ryan St. Martin, will play at Lakeville North at 3 p.m. Saturday in a matchup of schools that tied for the South Suburban Conference championship last season.

The Lightning is 1-2-1 in its first four games, with the highlight a 5-4 victory over Hastings on Nov. 12.

Eastview trailed Hastings 2-0, 3-1 and 4-3 before taking the lead on Erica Geary’s power-play goal at 4:58 of the third period. It was Geary’s second goal of the game; she also had two assists.

Kellie McGahn had a goal and assist against Hastings, and Paige Suhsen also scored.

Geary scored in a 3-1 loss to Hopkins on Nov. 14. The Lightning has a week between games before facing Lakeville South at home at 7 p.m. Thursday. Eastview will play host to Rosemount in a 2 p.m. game Saturday.
Apple Valley

The Eagles front-loaded their schedule with strong opponents and the results have played havoc with their record. They’re 0-3 and have been outscored 26-6.

Apple Valley’s opponents were seventh-ranked Wayzata, followed by defending state Class A champion Blake and defending Class AA champion Minnetonka. The Eagles will look for their first victory when they play at Bloomington Jefferson/Kennedy at 7 p.m. Thursday. They will be at Lakeville South at 2:45 p.m. Saturday.

Forwards Meg Thelen and Erica Power each have three points through the Eagles’ first three games.