Updated: 03/07/2014 12:32 AM
Created: 03/06/2014 4:19 PM KSTP.com
By: Chris Long
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Eden Prairie raced out to a sizable early lead on two goals by Jack Sullivan, but needed to hold on down the stretch to beat Centennial 4-3 in a Class AA State Hockey Quarterfinal.
After trailing 4-1 at the start of the second period, Centennial cut Eden Prairie's lead from three to one with goals from Ryner Gorowsky and Adam Anderson, setting the stage for a potential third-period rally.
Jake Gerdes made 20 saves for the victorious Eagles, but it was a puck off his left goalpost that may have saved the day.
Centennial had put immense pressure on Gerdes in the third period, hitting a post on a point-blank shot with about five-and-half minutes to go in the game.
Still carrying all the momentum, Centennial took a penalty with two-and-a-half minutes to go that took the wind out of their sails.
Eden Prairie was able to maintain possession of the puck through much of the ensuing power play to kill the clock and advance.
Sullivan's two goals along with tallies from Marc Sullivan and Michael Graham had Eden Prairie up 4-1 through the first period. Tyler Nyman scored Centennial's lone goal in the first.
Eden Prairie advances to play Lakeville North in Friday's Class AA Semifinals.