Another large crowd – at least 50 staff and students – was on hand in Correlieu Secondary School’s gym last Wednesday (Feb. 6) to see the ice-breaker game for the Icemen and the Chicks With Sticks (formerly known as the Sopranos).
The Icemen struggled to get organized to open the game, citing numerous equipment malfunctions for the delay, but their fearless leader, Ralph Weaver, had everyone pointed in the same direction by the time the ball dropped.
It was a spirited contest that saw the all-girls Chicks With Sticks apply a ton of early pressure, only to be turned away by the stellar net-minding of Sam Goulet. For the game, Goulet would only surrender a single goal, and that one was tipped several times by the time it hit the twine.
The girls’ failure to capitalize on their early pressure allowed Icemen sniper Trey Lightning to find his legs and shift the balance of play.
Though closer than the final 7-1 score, the girls simply had no answer for Lightning, who finished the game with six of the seven Icemen tallies.
Danielle Gamache was strong offensively for the girls, while goalie Makenna Maxwell made several excellent stops.
In the immortal words of Howie Meeker, “gee willikers, what a game we’ve got here.”
In the season’s early classic, held in the same locale on Thursday (Feb. 7), the Meatheads withstood a furious comeback from the relentless 8% squad to prevail 10-9.
Led by the deft play-making and shooting of Spencer Dent and Dyson Leneve, the Meatheads leapt out to a comfortable (or so it seemed) five-goal lead in the game’s early minutes.
Blocking out the caterwauling of 35 fans committed to getting under his skin, 8% backstop Kaden Ekstrom made a series of excellent saves — including a penalty shot — to give scorers like Dawson Rusk and Ryan Murray a chance to get the offense going.
With under two minutes left to play, the score was knotted, and it was Meathead ‘tender Jesse Schonke who found himself under siege.
Rusk thought he’d potted the go-ahead tally only to have the goal called off for striking the crossbar and not the back pipe. A class act all the way, Rusk shook off his disappointment and played hard to the final whistle.
Despite Murray’s dancing bear dangle late in the contest, it was the Meatheads who ultimately found the back of the net for the game-winning goal.
It was easily the best-played, most exciting game of the season’s early schedule.
Nobody would be surprised to see a rematch of these two skilled, hard-working teams come playoff time.