The Osseo-Maple Grove Junior Gold B team entered the state tournament as the eighth seed in the 8-team bracket.
OMG started the tournament by knocking off the #1 seed and tournament host Wayzata, 4-1, in a game that was much closer than the score would indicate. With the game tied 1-1 six minutes into the 3rd period, Corey Ross split the Wayzata defensemen and scored his second goal of the game.
With just under two minutes remaining OMG was called for interference. With the faceoff in the OMG zone, Wayzata pulled their goalie for the six on four advantage. To the dismay of the home crowd, OMG center Matt Leonard won the face off and Ross launched a 180 foot prayer that found the back of the Wayzata net. The goal gave Ross the hat trick and with a 33 save performance from goalie Reece Poppie, secured OMG’s trip to the semi-finals.
OMG defeated the #4 seed and number #1 ranked Tartan, 5-1, in a very physical, hard fought game. This time it was Tanner Sinjem leading the way for the OMG squad with a hat trick of his own. OMG received another strong performance by Poppie who had 28 saves in the victory. OMG went on to defeat the #2 seed Edina White, 2-1, to win their first Jr. Gold B state Championship.
OMG had been defeated by all three teams during the regular season, making their championship run that much more impressive.
Coach Chuck Sinjem added, “To give up a total of 3 goals in 3 games against teams of that caliber requires a total team effort. I asked a lot from our defensemen this weekend and they really stepped up and answered the call. Every guy on our team contributed and made an impact. I kept telling them, just keep playing hard and we’ll see what happens. I think by Sunday afternoon they figured out what I was talking about. I am very proud of our guys for what they were able to accomplish.”