-Peewee girls needed a timely goal to compliment defence
by Bill Dunphy
-by Bill Dunphy
Cape Breton West's Skylar Kennedy (left) centers the puck for Lauren MacDonnell (No. 5) while Keely MacPhail sets up on the other side of the Glace Bay net during Peewee Female provincial action in Port Hood on Saturday.
You would think if you allowed just three goals in four games, something good would happen. Sadly, for the Cape Breton West Islanders, a timely goal was also needed as hosts of the Nova Scotia Peewee A Female provincial hockey tournament.
The Islanders were stellar as hosts, posting a 2-2 won-lost record that included two one-goal losses and two shutout victories. But in the end, they had to settle for third place.
“They try so hard, they get back and defend their goalie, they do everything right, but we just have trouble scoring sometimes,” said Cape Breton West coach Darryl MacDonald. “And we have the worst luck at tournaments.”
Take the first game of the tournament, for instance. Cape Breton County scored a shorthanded goal at 2:25 of the first period and ended up winning 1-0.
Grace Munro, in goal for Cape Breton West, gave her team every chance to tie it, but they couldn’t beat tournament MVP Arianna Denny in the County goal.
Sophie Sawler, on defence, and Abby Walker, on offence, were Cape Breton West’s game MVPs.
And then there was Halifax. The Islanders hit a bunch of posts, sailed one over the crossbar, and had some empty-net chances and still lost 2-1 to the Hawks.
Halifax would eventually lose to Cape Breton County 4-0 in Sunday’s championship game.
Offensive game MVP Chloe Spears scored with 13 seconds left to spoil the shutout bid. Defensive MVP was Hannah Gillis.
With Friday behind them, and possibly the nerves as well, Cape Breton West played like champs on Saturday.
On Saturday morning, Katie Beaton, Kaylin MacNeil and Skylar Kennedy each found the back of the net, and Grace Munro was perfect in goal as the Islanders blanked the TASA Ducks 3-0.
Celia MacDonald, with two assists, was the offensive MVP, and Munro took the defensive honour.
Knowing they were all but out of it, the Islanders still came out and played the Glace Bay Miners hard in their final game of the round-robin, winning 3-0.
Kaylin MacNeil, Celia MacDonald and Keely MacPhail each scored for Cape Breton West, with Munro picking up her second shutout.
MacPhail was named offensive MVP while Melissa MacDonald was the defensive MVP.
Of note in the championship game, Cheticamp native Guy Poirier was on the Cape Breton County bench as an assistant coach. His daughter, Alexa, earned an offensive MVP award with two goals in a 5-1 win over Halifax in the round-robin.
Two Cape Breton West players were honoured with top awards at the end of the tournament. Grace Munro was named top goaltender, and Katie Beaton was named the tournament’s most sportsmanlike player.
Two Islanders were also named to the first all-star team: forward Celia MacDonald and Hannah Gillis on defence.
“Overall we had a very good year. We had a lot of fun and got to play some good hockey; you can’t ask much more than that,” said MacDonald.
“I also want to thank everyone on the organizing committee for running a great tournament. Everything went smoothly, and I heard nothing but positive comments from the visiting coaches.”
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