It was a bumpy road, but Ontario Red completed the four-peat at the 2017 National Women’s Under-18 Championship.
In the provincial gold medal showdown (Ontario Red versus Ontario Blue), Jacqueline Tam’s (Toronto, Ont./Mississauga, PWHL) power play marker in the second period would be the game winning goal as Red defeated Blue 3-1.
“We battled through a lot of adversity this week, but we really stuck together as a team — especially in the second period, we came together. The energy on the bench definitely helped us,” said Sarah Fillier (Georgetown, Ont./Oakville, PWHL), who earned two points in the game. “It’s just an amazing feeling, especially to do it again this year, and with a great, great group of girls too.” (from hockeycanada.ca)
The two squads lined up against each other just days earlier in the preliminary round with Blue coming out on top 3-1, thanks to Blue’s Courtney Correia’s (Whitby, Ont./Toronto, PWHL) three points 2G, 1A). Red managed to silence her in the gold medal game.
Blue kicked off scoring early in the first period with a goal from Alexa Hoskin (Belleville, Ont./Kingston, PHWL), assisted by the tournaments top point earner Nicole Kelly. (Brantford, Ont./Etobicoke, PWHL). That lead would not last to the end of the first period. Fillier tied the game up 1-1 and then assisted on Tam’s power play goal in the second for Red to take the lead. Lauren Bellefontaine (Kemptville, Ont./Nepean, PWHL) added the insurance goal just before the midway point of the second period with an assist from Zoe Boyd (Caledon East, Ont./Mississauga, PWHL).
Ontario Red choose to start Madelyn McArthur (St. Catharines, Ont./Oakville, PWHL) over Sophie Wolfe (Nepean, Ont./Nepean, PWHL), who started in the preliminary game against Blue. McArthur turned aside 21 shots in the gold medal win.
Ontario Red suffered an upset loss in the opening of the preliminary round to Atlantic 2-1, shut out Alberta 2-0 and then lost to Ontario Blue. In the semifinal they walked over B.C. 6-1.
Congrats to Team Blue on winning silver at the U18 Nationals. pic.twitter.com/UJs6G3qA62— OntarioWomensHockey (@OWHAhockey) November 6, 2017
B.C. Repeats as Bronze Medal Winners
It was a nail-biter finish for the bronze medal with B.C. and Saskatchewan battling to overtime for a decision.
Locked 1-1 after regulation time, B.C. dominated the 10-minute four-on-four overtime, putting 10 pucks on net compared to Saskatchewan, who didn’t register one shot on goal. A theme consistent throughout the game with B.C. outshooting Saskatchewan 48-22.
A Saskatchewan penalty in the extra period gave B.C. the upper hand and they took advantage. After taking several shots from the point, a pass over to Rylind MacKinnon (Cranbrook, B.C./Northern Alberta, CSSHL) beat Jordan Ivanco (Saskatoon, Sask./Saskatoon, SFMAAHL). Assists went to Danika Pasqua (Langley, B.C./Pacific, JWHL) and Courtney Vortster (Richmond, B.C./Shattuck-St. Mary’s, USHS). Mackinnon was named player of the game for B.C.
“It was another exciting one, wasn’t it?,” said B.C. head coach Graham Thomas. “I give Saskatchewan a lot of credit — they play hard, they play well, they play a good team game and they’ve got a great goalie as well. It was intense, it was fun to be a part of and I’m really proud of our group to show their resiliency and not panic, have some composure. Because when a goalie’s really hot and tough to score on, sometimes it can allow you to break down a little bit. We did a good job of staying disciplined and focused through all of that.”
Jenna Buglioli (Port Moody, B.C./Greater Vancouver, BCFMAAA) scored the first goal of the game giving B.C. the lead in the second period. Saskatchewan battled back with Miranda Hatt (Regina, Sask./Regina, SFMAAHL) scoring the equalizer late in the middle frame.
B.C., who took the bronze medal last year, and Saskatchewan, who was making their first appearance in a medal game in the tournament’s history, had met earlier in the tournament with B.C. shutting out Saskatchewan 2-0.
On Saturday, Alberta defeated Quebec 4-1 to earn fifth place. Manitoba beat Atlantic 2-1 to take seventh place.
Tournament player awards
Top forward: Nicole Kelly, Ontario Blue
Top defenceman: Courtney Forster, British Columbia
Most sportsmanlike player: Taylor Kiran, Saskatchewan
Top goaltender: Madelyn McArthur, Ontario Red
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