Somerset’s Owen McDonough

Somerset’s Owen McDonough (27) tries to get around Baldwin-Woodville’s Max Buhr (24) in the first period of the Spartans’ 6-3 loss to the Hawks in a WIAA Division 2 sectional final Saturday in Somerset. Bob Burrows / Star-Observer photo

Baldwin-Woodville used a four goal second period to build a 5-1 lead, then held off a Somerset charge in the third period, to defeat the Spartans 5-3 in a WIAA Division 2 sectional final in Somerset Saturday.

The victory sends the Hawks to the state tournament for the first time in school history while denying the Spartans their third straight trip to state.

Baldwin-Woodville took a 1-0 lead with 2 minutes, 3 seconds left in the first period on a Sam Sykora goal and led 2-0 midway through the second following a goal by Bazl Cook.

The Hawks were whistled for the first penalty of the game with 7:18 remaining in the second period, and the Spartans capitalized 49 seconds later when Noah Bailey sent a wrister from the right dot into the back of the net with assists going to Owen McDonough and Antonio Gomez

But Baldwin-Woodville answered with two quick goals– by Rhett Schweitzer through traffic with 5:52 remaining in the period and Sykora on a centering pass from the corner that deflected off a Spartan skate 25 seconds later– to open up a 5-1 lead after two.

The Spartans closed the gap with a power play goal by Abe Sirek, assisted by Gomez and Brock Sawicki, at the 7:57 mark of the third period, and Broden Thiel tipped in a Gomez shot from the point with 5:26 remaining to make it a 5-3 game.

The Spartans had a chance to pull closer when they were awarded a penalty shot with 1:30 left, but Hawks’ goalie Dominic Hite stopped the attempt by McDonough to preserve the 5-3 final score.

Hite finished with 26 saves for Baldwin-Woodville while Somerset goalie Taylor Abitz stopped 14 shots.

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