Eagles send Muskies packing again

With a summer of movie sequels on the horizon, the Dryden Eagles beat Hollywood to the punch and released their own follow-up.
In a rerun of last year’s NorWOSSA playoffs, both the Eagles boys’ and girls’ hockey teams brought a sudden end to the Muskies’ seasons with semi-final sweeps.
After an 8-3 pummelling here Thursday night, the Muskie boys offered a much tougher challenge yesterday in the second game of their best-of-three series.
But Shaun McNeill’s goal during a scramble in front of the Muskies’ net gave the Eagles a 2-1 victory and a 2-0 series win.
Nathan Miller’s goal at 4:19 of the second, set up after Greg Flewelling delivered a pass just before being levelled by a Dryden defender, had the Muskies ahead 1-0 after two periods.
But Andrew Skeene tied it at 11:48 of the third, before McNeill came through for the game and series winner to send the third-place Eagles on to the NorWOSSA final against the first-place Kenora Broncos.
The Broncos eliminated the fourth-place Red Lake Rams with a 4-3 victory in double overtime yesterday to take sweep that series.
The Muskies had finished the NorWOSSA regular season in second place with a 16-4 record—and were primed to return to the all-Ontarios in Peterborough after missing out last year.
But in a season which also contained a head coaching change when Glen Edwards abruptly resigned in early December after a 5-0 start, the Muskies never found their form and will have to try and rebuild with perhaps as many as eight players not returning to next year’s squad.
On the girls’ side, the Muskie mirrored their male counterparts with a rejuvenated effort in game two of their series here yesterday afternoon, but a more experienced Dryden squad pulled away in the third for a 4-1 win.
Despite the puck almost constantly being in the Muskies’ zone for most of the first two periods, the black-and-gold found themselves tied with the Eagles after Becky Witherspoon’s goal at 10:36 of the second gave the home team new life.
But Carly Brown squelched the rally when she finished off a two-on-one with Nikki Kruger at 14:14 of the period to make it 2–1 for Dryden, then added her second of the game at 7:42 of the third.
Brittany Bembeneck and Kasey Haw added singles for the Eagles, who now move on to face the first-place Kenora Broncos in the NorWOSSA final.
Dryden was dominant on home ice Friday night in the series opener, busting loose with six goals in the third period en route to an 8-0 shutout.
Kruger had four goals in that one, with Brittany Kamm, Jane Cortens, Jessica Brown, and Bembeneck adding singles.
Like her Muskie goaltending partner Megan Bob did yesterday, netminder Kim Pacarenuk was valiant in defeat Friday as the Eagles outshot the black-and-gold 61-10.
Yesterday’s loss ends a difficult season for a very inexperienced Muskie team that went 0-12 in the regular season before being ousted in the semi-finals.
But a solid nucleus of players should be on hand next season as forward and team captain Tara Lloyd, along with blueliners Brooke Shabatura and Diana Redford, are the only players not scheduled to return.