PHANTOM BREAK OUT FOR FIRST WIN
By Wendy Graves
STONEY CREEK, Ont. – You fire 50 shots on net, and good things are bound to happen.
The Fraser Valley Phantom finally founds their scoring touch in defeating the Moncton Rockets 7-2 on Wednesday afternoon. It was the B.C. team's first win of the Esso Cup.
Kirsten Martin (Rosedale, B.C.) paced the offence with two goals and an assist. Zoe Todd (Vancouver, B.C.), Michelle Toor (Burnaby, B.C.), Jodi Gentile (Richmond, B.C.), Brianna Keats (Chilliwack, B.C.) and Mackenzie Wong (Surrey, B.C.) also scored for Fraser Valley.
Kaely McMurtry (Port Coquitlam, B.C.), Chelsea Wilson (Langley, B.C.) and Courtney Vorster (Richmond, B.C.) had three assists each, in helping goalie Valenica Yordanov (Port Coquitlam, B.C.) pick up the win.
Brooke Murphy (Riverview, N.B.) and Sarah Bujold (Riverview, N.B.) both had a goal and an assist in the loss. Hayley Hallihan (Miramichi, N.B.) also had an assist for Moncton.
It was a must-win game for Fraser Valley if the team had any hope of making the playoffs. Coming into the game, the Phantom – the top-scoring team in the British Columbia Female Midget AAA League – had struggled to find the back of the net.
The team needed a fast start and Todd gave it to them 65 seconds in. The defenceman held the Rockets' clearing attempt at the blue line and sent a shot on net. Goalie Jordan Carrier (Moncton, N.B.) seemed to misplay the puck, allowing it to go five-hole and in. The early strike gave the Phantom their first lead of the tournament.
“It was a big confidence booster,” Gentile said after the game. “We hadn't been scoring a lot and getting that goal was a really good way to get momentum going and our confidence back up.”
Fraser Valley controlled the opening 20 minutes – firing 20 shots on Carrier – but went to the first intermission up just the one goal.
Two goals less than two minutes apart in the second suggested the team had finally solved the Moncton goalie. Although Delaney Duchek (Delta, B.C.) didn't draw an assist on the play, her crowding the crease helped Toor's point shot elude Carrier at 5:47. At 7:37, Gentile's point shot through traffic made it 3-0.
Brianne Waterman (Memramcook, N.B.) came in to replace Carrier, who faced 26 shots over 27 minutes.
The change in net seemed to help change the tide. Five minutes later, Murphy had an open net to put home a rebound. Four minutes after that, Bujold buried a Hayley Hallihan rebound from just outside the crease.
But any thoughts Moncton had of a comeback were put to bed during an eight-minute span in the third that saw: Wong tip in Vorster's point shot, Martin shoot low from the face-off circle, Martin tip in McMurtry's point shot, and Keats one-time a feed from Gabrielle Roy (Chilliwack, B.C.).