The Prior Lake girls hockey team continues to keep battling, despite its struggle to find wins.
The Lakers' hard work paid off Jan. 20 with a 4-3 overtime home win over Lakeville North in South Suburban Conference play. Eighth-grader Nina Winter tallied the game-winner.
Prior Lake (4-17 overall, 2-12 in the SSC) went into the contest off a 4-1 loss at home Eastview Jan. 17 in league action.
The Lakers have four games left in the regular season are all four are SSC ones, starting Jan. 24 at home versus Eagan at 7 p.m. Prior Lake is also home to Rosemount Jan. 26 at 5:30 p.m.
The team's final two games are at Shakopee Jan. 31 and at Apple Valley Feb. 2.
The Section 2AAA playoffs start Feb. 8 with the quarterfinals. The semifinals are Feb. 12 and the finals are Feb. 15 with the final two rounds at Braemar Ice Arena in Edina.
The Lakers are likely to be the No. 8 seed. Eighth-ranked Eden Prairie (13-5-2) is looking like the No. 1 seed.
Other teams in the field: Chaska/Chanhassen (14-5-2), Shakopee (10-10-1), Minnetonka (11-9-1), Holy Family (13-5-2), New Prague (13-6-2) and Bloomington Jefferson (10-10-2).
Against Lakeville North, senior Taylor Thomas scored with 38 seconds left to play to get the Lakers into overtime. Senior Charlotte Huntington and junior Kya Ochsendorf had the assists.
Winter scored 3:50 into the extra session with sophomore Mackenzie Salentre getting the assist.
Prior Lake trailed 2-0 after the first period, but rallied in the second period with a pair of goals. Sophomore Payton Bloedow and Huntington scored 44 seconds apart. Bloedow's goal was unassisted, while Ochsendorf had the assists on Huntington's goal.
Junior Brianna Elbon finished with 33 saves in goal for the Lakers.
In the loss to Eastview, it was a 1-1 game after two periods of play. But the Lightning took control in the final frame, scoring three times.
Salentre had the Lakers' goal with Bloedow getting the assist. Elbon finished with 23 saves.