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Heppner's hat trick seals win by Pirates

Brady Heppner scored twice in the final six minutes to break a 3-3 tie and give Crookston a 6-3 victory over the Park Rapids-Menahga-Nevis-Walker-Hackensack-Akeley boys hockey team at the Ted O. Johnson Ice Arena Tuesday night.

Crookston jumped out to a 3-0 lead behind first-period goals by Heppner and Chandler St. Michel and a second-period goal by Ryan Edevold in this battle of Section 8A rivals.

After being dominated in the second period as the Pirates held an 11-2 advantage in shots, Park Rapids tied the game by scoring three times in a span of 4:06 in the third period.

Noah MacPherson scored off a Crookston turnover at the 6:04 mark and Frank Moren scored off another Crookston turnover at the 8:42 mark. Moren then scored the tying goal off a rebound at the 10:10 mark. Connor Kennedy and Ian Johnson assisted on MacPherson's goal while MacPherson and Ryan DeLaHunt were credited with assists on Moren's game-tying goal.

The Pirates regained the lead when Heppner scored on the power play with 5:07 to play. After St. Michel scored into an empty net with 1:46 remaining, Heppner completed his hat trick with a shorthanded goal with 41 seconds left.

Park Rapids goalie Cody Brumbaugh finished with 26 saves as Crookston held a 32-20 advantage in shots.

The loss dropped the Panthers to 0-3 against section opponents and 1-3 overall while Crookston improved to 3-0 against section foes and 6-2 overall.

Crookston 2 1 3...6

Park Rapids 0 0 3...3

FIRST PERIOD: 1, Crookston, Heppner (Morgan), 2:47. 2, Crookston, St. Michel, 3:23. Penalties: Crookston 2, Park Rapids 0.

SECOND PERIOD: 3, Crookston, Edevold (Tate), 4:55. Penalties: Crookston 0, Park Rapids 1.

THIRD PERIOD: 1, Park Rapids, MacPherson (Kennedy, Johnson), 6:04. 2, Park Rapids, Moren, 8:42. 3, Park Rapids, Moren (MacPherson, DeLaHunt), 10:10. 4, Crookston, Heppner (Edevold, Salentiny), 11:53. 5, Crookston, St. Michel (Heppner, Morgan), 15:14. 6, Crookston, Heppner, 16:29. Penalties: Crookston 2, Park Rapids 2.

GOALIE SAVES: Crookston (Stainbrook) 12-2-3-17. Park Rapids (Brumbaugh) 11-10-5-26.