WASILLA -- Monroe, a team with only 12 players, finally got the job done in the Greatland hockey state championship game.
After finishing second at the previous two state tournaments, Monroe used a 22-save performance from junior goalie Nathaniel Brose and a pair of goals from senior Jacob Hebard to capture first place Saturday with a 3-0 win over Houston.
"It's unbelievable," Brose said. "We lost the last two years and that was really tough."
The toughest part was last season's overtime loss to Hutchison in the championship game, Brose said. The Rams found a measure of redemption in beating Hutchison in a Friday semifinal at the Menard Center.
"To come back here and beat Hutchison yesterday and beat Houston today, that was perfect for us," Brose said.
After a scoreless first period, Hebard put Monroe up 1-0 with 10:59 left in the second. Senior Kyle Coiley made it 2-0 early in the third period.
When Hebard knocked home his second goal with 1:17 remaining, several teammates piled on top of him in celebration, and the Rams littered their end of the ice with sticks, gloves and helmets at the final buzzer.
"It's been a long haul," said fourth-year coach Kirk Haman. "We've got 11 skaters and a goalie, we've got four freshmen. We've got five seniors, so this was a great way to send them off."
Hutchison 7, Delta 3
Four third-period goals secured third place for Hutchison in the Greatland state hockey tournament as the Hawks rolled to a 7-3 win over Delta Junction.
Delta tied the score at 3-3 on a goal from Tylor Williams less than two minutes into the third period, but Hutchison put the game away with goals from Dylan Edwards, Justin Boots, Brandon Rustad and Tom Lemelin.
Goalie Daniel Slane made 19 saves for Hutchison, which outshot Delta 35-22.
Reach Jeremy Peters at email@example.com or 257-4335.
By JEREMY PETERS