Struggling in extra time

The women’s hockey team earns two points in losses on the road

Last weekend, the women’s hockey team traveled to Toronto for a 1-0 shootout loss to the University of Toronto Varsity Blues and a 4-3 overtime loss against the York Lions. The Gaels are now in fifth place in the OUA with a 4-3-3 record.

“It wasn’t a horrible weekend,” said goalie Mel Dodd-Moher. “We did score a few goals, so that’s good but it wasn’t the best.”

The Gaels were only able to grab one point over the Varsity Blues on Saturday. With neither side able to score in regulation or overtime, the game was forced into a shootout. With two successful attempts by the Blues players, the Gaels were unable to find the back of the net as both forwards Kelsey Thomson and Morgan McHaffie were stopped by the Toronto goalie.

In the Sunday game against York University, the referee called 11 penalties, leading to three power-play goals for the Lions, including the game winner, scored 1:02 into overtime after a controversial roughing call on Gaels forward Morgan McHaffie.

Dodd-Moher said the Gaels are experiencing some offensive turbulence. They have been held to one goal or less in five of their 10 games so far this season.

“[We need to] keep scoring,” Dodd-Moher said. “Obviously, the biggest part of the game is scoring and I think that we just need to keep doing that, just keep working hard.”

Scoring is crucial for the Gaels right now; they are between the fourth place Windsor Lancers, who have 12 points, and the Blues, who have 10 points. With a strong effort, the Gaels could move ahead of that pack with a few wins.

“The league is probably the most competitive it’s been in a long time, and anyone can beat anyone, so we have to get out and play our hardest against everybody,” Dodd-Moher said.

Coach Matt Holmberg was also unhappy about the weekend.

“[I was] not necessarily disappointed in the effort that the girls gave, but disappointed that we didn’t come away with more than two points,” she said, adding that the Gaels’ last three games have all been lost in either overtime or in shootouts.

“[It] has been a bit of a surprise,” Holmberg said. “In overtime, I think we’re playing pretty well… In a shootout, normally we do that very well. It’s actually something that we practice every week.”

The Gaels are playing better than their record would indicate; seven of their 10 games this season have been decided by only a one-goal difference.

“I would say that I’m disappointed with our record to date, but we do see a lot of good things happening,” Holmberg said. “Our record could easily be something like 7-3 … We’ve given ourselves a chance to win, actually, every game, so I think that the team has learned from that, and I expect that we’re going to see a more determined and more successful team in the next third [of our season].”

The Gaels will be on the road facing off against the Brock Badgers on Saturday at 7:15 p.m. Queen’s will travel to Guelph to play the Gryphons at 2 p.m. on Sunday.

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