Muskie girls rewarded for hard work

Jamie Mountain

They have improved steadily all season and were rewarded for their hard work over the weekend.
Issy Taylor scored twice to pace the Muskie girls’ hockey team to a 2-1 win over the Lord Selkirk Royals (Winnipeg) on Saturday afternoon to claim the ‘B’-side title at the annual K-Town Classic Tournament in Kenora.
Head coach Chris Sinclair was pleased with his squad’s effort during the tournament.
“I thought we played four strong games, and the two games that we did lose we deserved to win,” he said.
“I think we have gotten better and better each game, and we have to continue that trend moving into the new year.
“Selkirk was a good skating team so it was important that we matched their speed and intensity,” Sinclair noted.
“They only had two lines, so it was important to get pucks in deep in their end and put pressure on their defence to wear them down,” he reasoned.
“Although we were down 1-0 early in the game, we did a good job in battling back and taking/holding onto the lead for the rest of the game,” he lauded.
The Muskies, who sport a 2-2-0-1 record in NorWOSSA play, resumed league action last night against the St. Thomas Aquinas Saints of Kenora (5-1) at the ’52 Canadians Arena, with the result not known as of press time.
It also was the team’s annual “Teddy Bear Toss” game.
Sinclair believed the game against the Saints would be big for his squad as they have been struggling of late.
“I expect them to come out strong and wanting a win,” he said of the Saints.
“Having said that, being our ‘Teddy Bear Toss Night,’ I believe the girls will come out wanting to score early.
“But we need to be ready,” Sinclair warned. “Although we have gotten better and better, this needs to be our best game of the first half.
“Playing a full 60 minutes is going to be the key,” he stressed.
“They are a team who will take advantage of breakdowns, so it is important that we are ready to play as soon as the puck drops and we can’t take a shift off.”
As for the K-Town Classic, the Royals opened the scoring early into the first period of Saturday’s final but Taylor evened it at 1-1 with 12:42 to go.
Taylor then netted her second of the game with under five minutes left in the frame to give the Muskies a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.
The black-and-gold had opened tourney play Friday afternoon with a 2-1 loss to St. Thomas Aquinas.
Jill Calder scored the Muskies’ lone goal in the third period.
But the squad rebounded in a big way later Friday with a 14-0 rout of the Sioux Lookout Warriors.
Kianna Antonick, Calder, Abby Kenny, and Alex Gartzke all bulged the twine in the first period of that one as the Muskies built a 4-0 lead.
Fort High then tallied four more times in the second frame off the sticks of Emily Kaun (two), Antonick, and Savannah McGinnis to make it 8-0.
Martina Woods (two), Makenna Hentonnen, Katrina Koomans, Gartzke, and Ashlyn Beck all connected in the third to cap the scoring.
The Muskies then battled the Dryden Eagles in the semi-finals Saturday morning.