DEMPSEY, KISH LEAD GOLD WINGS TO WIN
By: Wendy Graves
STONEY CREEK, Ont. – The Weyburn Gold Wings continue to roll.
Caitlin Dempsey (Heward, Sask.) had two goals, Bailee Bourassa (Weyburn, Sask.) added another, and Tessa Wilson (Mazenod, Sask.) and Kassidy Sjostrand (Midale, Sask.) added two assists each as the West Region champions defeated the still-winless Fraser Valley Phantom 3-2 Tuesday afternoon.
Jane Kish (Weyburn, Sask.) stopped 38 of 40 shots in backstopping her team to a third straight win.
Brianna Keats (Chilliwack, B.C.) and Mikayla Ogrodniczuk (Vancouver, B.C.) scored for the Phantom, the team’s first two goals of the tournament. Fraser Valley fell to 0-3 with the loss.
The Gold Wings run of wins precedes its arrival in Stoney Creek for the Esso Cup. After wheeling off eight straight wins to close out the Saskatchewan Female Midget AAA Hockey League regular season, the team went 11-3 in winning four rounds of playoffs.
It’s no surprise, then, that Weyburn got on the board first. After winning the battle for the puck behind the Fraser Valley net, Wilson kicked the puck to herself and fed an unmarked Dempsey out front.
“Tessa passed it right to me and I couldn’t do anything but score,” says Dempsey.
A little more than six minutes later Fraser Valley evened things up off a broken play. A centering pass intended for Mackenzie Wong (Surrey, B.C.) instead went off a defender to an open Keats on the other – and open – side of the crease.
The physical play picked up as the second period played on. Minutes after a perceived non-slashing call on Fraser Valley, a brief scuffle broke out in the Weyburn crease.
When Bourassa converted a one-timer from Cassidy Pirlot (Wauchope, Sask.) with two minutes remaining in the second, the celebration seemed particularly pronounced.
Dempsey increased her team’s lead early in the third with a low shot from the face-off circle 20 seconds into the power play.
The Phantom had several good chances as the clock ticked on to pull closer, with the best coming when Kirsten Martin (Rosedale, B.C.) got sprung on a break halfway through the period. But Kish closed the door, and continued to keep it shut most of the night.
“I told her after the game that if she didn’t already have a Player of the Game Award, I would’ve given mine to her,” says Dempsey.
It took a rocket of a shot from the blue line by Ogrodnicuk to beat Kish a second time.
Valencia Yordanov (Port Coquitlam, B.C.) faced 21 shots and suffered her third straight defeat.