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Bismarck lands in ND girls hockey state title game for sixth-straight year

Bismarck's Britta Curl celebrates after scoring on West Fargo United goalie Brooklyn Myrvik in the second period of Friday's N.D. State Girls Hockey tournament game at the Ralph Engelstad Arena. Nick Nelson / Forum News Service1 / 7
Felicity Blair (23) celebrates a Bismarck goal from the bench with her teammates during Friday's N.D. State Girls Hockey tournament semifinal game against West Fargo United at Ralph Engelstad Arena. Nick Nelson / Forum News Service2 / 7
West Fargo United netminder Brooklyn Myrvik deflects a Bismarck slapshot during Friday's semifinal hockey game at the Ralph Engelstad Arena. Nick Nelson / Forum News Service3 / 7
West Fargo United forward Kenley Anderson flinches as a Blizzard slap shot flies toward her in the second period of Friday's N.D. State Girls Hockey game in Grand Forks. Nick Nelson / Forum News Service4 / 7
Bismarck Blizzard forward Riley Ball fires a wrist shot past West Fargo United's Mattyson Barta (18) and Madison Hjelden (8) in the second period of Friday's N.D. State Girls Hockey tournament semifinal game in Grand Forks. Nick Nelson / Forum News Service5 / 7
West Fargo United's Ellyssa Derrig chases the puck as Bismarck forward Riley Ball watches from the ice Friday afternoon at the Ralph Engelstad Arena. Nick Nelson / Forum News Service6 / 7
Bismarck's Felicity Blair chases the puck passed by teammate Kenley Anderson (18) during Friday's semifinal game against West Fargo United at Ralph Engelstad Arena in Grand Forks. Nick Nelson / Forum News Service7 / 7

GRAND FORKS—Bismarck senior forward Britta Curl will end her decorated prep career in a familiar position.

Curl had two goals and an assist to lead Bismarck to a 4-0 win over West Fargo United on Friday afternoon, Feb. 23, in the North Dakota state tournament semifinals at Ralph Engelstad Arena.

Bismarck (21-4) advances to the state championship game for the sixth-straight year, seeking the Blizzard's fourth-straight championship.

The No. 2 seed Blizzard face No. 1 Fargo North-South in the championship game at 5 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 24.

"It never gets old," said Curl, who missed the first half of the high school season because she was playing with USA Hockey's U-18 team. "We never take it for granted. We know not a lot of teams get to be here."

Bismarck's Taylor Lenertz started the scoring just 1 minute, 50 seconds into the first period. Then just 63 seconds later, Curl scored her first of the game to give the Blizzard a quick 2-0 advantage in the game's opening three minutes.

"I thought the start was so important," Bismarck coach Tim Meyer said. "When you come out in a big game like this, there's nerves involved. But we set the tone. That gave us the edge the whole game."

Riley Ball gave the Blizzard a 3-0 lead with a goal at 13:51 of the first, while Curl scored on a breakaway midway through the second period for the final tally.

"I don't think we showed up completely," West Fargo coach Pat Johnson said. "We were standing around."

The win for Bismarck sets up the showdown with North-South, which the Blizzard split with during the regular season.

"It should be a very good one," Meyer said of the title game. "We have respect for their program and the things they've done the past. These are the ones you look forward to. You hope it shakes out where you play the best teams in the state. It's exciting to know we get to play the regular season champions."

Tom Miller

Miller has been with the Grand Forks Herald sports department since 2004. He's also a Grand Forks native and UND graduate. 

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