Girls Hockey Outlasts Framingham
by Joe Walsh
The Braintree high school girl’s varsity hockey team defeated Framingham on Saturday by a score of 3-2.
Braintree started the game strong, outplaying Framingham on both ends of the ice. Sophomore Meg Gilbride, and junior Haley Payne each scored early in the first period, giving Braintree a comfortable lead to start the game. Just as it seemed Braintree’s defense would completely suppress Framingham’s offense in the first period, Framingham managed to score with twenty-six seconds remaining.
Framingham’s last minute goal seemed to diminish Braintree’s momentum going into the second period. Braintree head coach Kevin Burchill said, “I think they were down on themselves going into the second.” Braintree’s offense was unable to outmaneuver Framingham’s aggressive defense, and capitalize on scoring opportunities. Framingham’s offense managed to score in the final minutes of the second period, tying the game 2-2.
Both teams played the entirety of the third period with an increased level of intensity, both defenses held the other team scoreless for the majority of the period. Then in the final minutes both offenses delivered a multitude of shots in an effort to break the tie. Sophomore goalie Molly Devlin made several key saves, which allowed junior Haley Payne to score her second goal of the game, with only thirty-five seconds left in the period, securing Braintree the victory.
Burchill was pleased with his team’s performance and thinks that as the season has progressed team unity has improved. “ I think the chemistry is getting better,” he said.
Burchill also believes that the younger players are acclimating to their positions on the team. He noted, “ In the last two games, the three freshmen line, has scored five out of eight goals, which I think has given them a lot more confidence… they’re holding onto the puck, they’re skating with the puck, and they’re making great passes.”
Burchill stated that in order to keep being successful the team’s floor-checking must improve, “ We have got to learn to squeeze, and force, and keep them on the boards; we did not do that for a period and a half.”
Saturday’s game adds another win to what has been a generally successful season for the Wamps. Their next game is against Needham on January 15th.