LLOYD EARNS SHUTOUT AS RAIDERS WIN BRONZE
WEYBURN, Sask. – Hanna Matchett (Nanton, Alta.), Breanne Trotter (Okotos, Alta.) and Hailey McCallum (Strathmore, Alta.) scored and Kate Lloyd (Chestermere, Alta.) made 21 saves as the Rocky Mountain Raiders beat the Saskatoon Stars 3-0 in the bronze medal game at the 2016 Esso Cup.
Lloyd, name the tournament’s Top Goaltender, earned her first shutout of the week.
Ava Thiessen (DeWinton, Alta.), Paige Russell (Strathmore, Alta), Megan Campbell (Cochrane, Alta.) and Nicolette Seper (Cochrane, Alta.) added assists.
Emma Johnson (Saskatoon, Sask.) made 18 saves for the Stars.
Saskatoon and Rocky Mountain were both looking to rebound from tough setbacks in the semifinals: the Stars from being shut out and the Raiders from losing in a shootout.
After not being shut out at all during the Saskatchewan Female Midget AAA Hockey League regular season and only once during the provincial playoffs, the Stars were blanked in their final two games in Weyburn.
Through the first 20 minutes the shots on net favoured the Stars by only three – nine shots to six – but it was Saskatoon controlling play and creating better shots for themselves.
A tripping penalty on Rayah DeCorby (Saskatoon, Sask.) nine minutes in to the second gave Rocky Mountain its first power play of the game, and the team took advantage. Matchett deflected in Thiessen’s shot from the slot 33 seconds in with the extra skater.
The lead was two less than six minutes later. Trotter picked up a loose puck in the slot, took a couple of strides and finished glove side.
Johnson left her net with about four minutes to play in regulation, but a Jordyn Gerlitz (Saskatoon, Sask.) tripping penalty with 1:31 to go forced her back in.
With only 37 seconds left in regulation, McCallum took a pass from Trotter, moved up the wing and fired a shot from just above the face-off circle far side over Johnson’s glove.
The Raiders bronze medal raises the Pacific Region’s all-time medal total at the Esso Cup to six: two silver and four bronze.
After winning the bronze medal themselves a year ago in Red Deer, Alta., the Stars head back to Saskatoon with a fourth place finish at Canada’s National Female Midget Championship.