Cardinals bring their A-game in 5-2 prelim round win
HOOKSETT – Will the real Bishop Guertin High School girls hockey team please skate to center ice?
The No. 9 Cardinals have been the ultimate Jekyll-Hyde team this season, but head coach Scott Ciszek hopes they’ve arrived for real after Tuesday’s 5-2 preliminary round win over the No. 8 Bishop Brady-Trinity-West co-op squad at Tri-Town Arena.
Here’s the difference: The Cards just lost to this team (often called Brinity West) 4-2 in the regular season finale on Saturday, after beating it 7-3 a month ago. But yesterday they pummeled Brinity West goalie Emily Senko with 38 shots, while the Cards’ Sarah King faced just 16.
“That’s the difference between when the players show up and decide they want to play,” Ciszek said. “Today they showed up and you saw the team that wanted to take advantage of every opportunity, the team that kept skating, the team that was passing, the team that was going to the net. They did everything they were supposed to be doing today.”
“I think as a team we came together more today,” said Cards sophomore Julie McLaughlin, who scored two goals with an assist to lead the way. “We definitely played a lot better together, and supported each other.”
Guertin now moves on to face top seed Concord (16-2) at Everett Arena at 5 p.m. Friday in the quarterfinals. Yesterday Guertin got a McLaughlin goal in the first period 4:25 in, assisted by Allyson McMahon. They made it 2-0 after two with a Kate Simpson goal, assisted by McLaughlin at 4:02.
It was clear then that it would be the Cards’ day. They began the third with three goals within a minute of each other, Lindsay Hult and McLaughlin unassisted and Brianna DeFelice from Brooke Yabroudy for a 5-0 lead at 4:32. So different from Saturday.
“We took turns, Saturday night we were all over them,” Giants-Pioneers coach Dan Earley said. “We’re very even. That’s a good team. That’s a great team. I’ll give them a shot at beating Concord and Hanover. Once they get going, they move the puck really well.”
Earley’s team got a goal credited to Courtney Ingham off a defensive miscue and another on a hard wrister by sniper Haley Hildreth, whom the Cards otherwise kept in check, both in the final three minutes.
Now it’s on to Concord. Remember, this is a Guertin team that stayed right with the Tide in a 6-5 game earlier this season, and also lost just 3-2 up at Hanover. Hard to believe they came in at 9-9.
“It could be anybody’s game,” Ciszek said. “You never know this season, it depends on who shows up.”
He’s hoping the same Guertin team from Tuesday shows up on Friday.