Boys Hockey: ‘X’ marks the spot as Little Falls clinches section championship

Sports Editor
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Little Falls senior Mike Anez fires the puck toward the net during the third period of the Section 6A semifinals against Sartell-St. Stephen, Feb. 25. Anez and the Flyers beat the Sabres 8-1 before taking down Fergus Falls 6-1 in Thursday’s championship.

Sixteen seconds.

That’s all it took for junior Ben Newman to light the lamp as well as a spark for the Little Falls boys hockey team in Thursday’s Section 6A championship game.

The Flyers continued to impose their will from there, dominating Fergus Falls 6-1 at MAC Arena in St. Cloud to earn a trip to the state tournament.

Michael Holthaus and Austin Bjorge set up Mark Anez just 4:17 after Newman’s goal to give Little Falls a 2-0 advantage, which it would hold until the second.

Joey Hanowski made it 3-0 midway through the second period with his ninth goal of the postseason before the Otters struck for their only goal three minutes later.

It appeared the score would remain 3-1 heading into the third, but Bjorge changed that, giving Little Falls a three-goal cushion with 55 seconds left in the second.

Mike Stumpf stopped 23 shots for the save in net.

The Class A quarterfinals are Wednesday at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. Game time and opponent are to be determined.

Fan bus available for state

There will be a fan bus traveling to the state tournament at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul for all championship bracket games this week.

The bus will leave three hours prior to game time, starting with Wednesday’s quarterfinal game.

Times were scheduled to be determined Saturday, March 4.

Fans can sign up in the Little Falls Activities Office until Tuesday at noon.

The cost for the bus and tickets for each day is $32 for adults and $26 for students.


Little Falls 6, Fergus Falls 1

Fergus Falls  0 1 0 – 1
Little Falls     2 2 2 – 6


LF: Ben Newman, 0:16

LF: Mark Anez (Holthaus, Bjorge), 4:33


LF: Joey Hanowski (Newman), 7:01

FF: Ahlgren, 9:53

LF: Austin Bjorge (Gregory, Hanowski), 16:05 (pp)


LF: Spencer Fenske (Hanowski, Gregory), 10:57 (pp)

LF: Newman (Hanowski), 15:54 (pp)

Saves: FF: 23; LF-Mike Stumpf: 23.