The Prior Lake girls hockey team is headed for a 12th straight losing season.
The Lakers entered the New Year with a 3-8-1 overall record (1-6 in the South Suburban Conference), following a 4-1 loss to Roseville Dec. 29 in the Kaposia Classic in South St. Paul.
Prior Lake went into the game off of a 5-4 home loss to Bloomington Jefferson Dec. 21. The Jaguars are a Section 2AA foe.
Through 12 games, the Lakers have struggled to score goals with just 24 total, while giving up 46 goals. Juniors Lula Swanson and Ava Guillemette had combined to score 16 of the team’s goals.
Swanson entered the New Year with a team-best nine goals and five assists, while Guillemette had seven goals and five assists.
Section 2AA play is not far off. Quarterfinal play starts Feb. 11 at the site of the higher seed. The semifinals are Feb. 15 and the title game is Feb. 18. The final two rounds are at Braemar Ice Arena in Edina.
Minnetonka is the defending champion and the Skippers, ranked No. 3, are again the favorite this winter, along with No. 9 Holy Family.
Shakopee, Eden Prairie, Chaska/Chanhassen and New Prague are also in the field.
The Lakers have just four playoff wins since becoming a Class 2A program at the start of the 2003-04 school year. Prior Lake lost 2-0 in the section quarterfinals last year to Minnetonka and fell 7-0 the year before to Eden Prairie.
Meanwhile, in the loss to Roseville, senior Halle Hallberg scored the Lakers’ goal with ninth-grader Sydney Kashmark and senior Bren Emerson each getting assists.
Sophomore Olivia Hansen finished with 36 saves in goal. She had 21 stops in the loss to Jefferson.
Prior Lake trailed 4-1 after two periods and tried to rally in the final frame. The Lakers pulled to within a goal with 5:02 left to play, but couldn’t get the equalizer.
Jefferson made it a two-goal lead with 1:10 left to play. Prior Lake answered that goal just 10 seconds later, but again fell short in the final minute trying to tie the game.
Swanson had the hat trick for Prior Lake. Guillemette had a goal and two assists. Junior Brooke Holmes chipped in two assists.
Holmes was third on the Lakers in points heading into 2022 with seven (2 goals, 5 assists).
Hansen started 10 of the first 12 games in goal for Prior Lake, posting a 3.35 goals-against average and an .891 save percentage.
Prior Lake’s two non-league wins this season are against New Prague (3-0) and Hopkins (2-0), while its lone SSC victory was over Eagan (4-1).
This year’s Class 2A state tournament is set for Feb. 23-26 at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. Andover is the defending champion.