PORTLAND — Greely brought its ‘A’ game. Scarborough brought goaltender Devan Kane.
The result was a 2-2 tie between the defending state champion Rangers and the undefeated Red Storm in a girls’ hockey game Saturday at the Cumberland County Civic Center.
It was a result that both teams might consider a win. Greely and Scarborough aren’t scheduled to face each other again during the regular season and they’re in different regions for the playoffs, so if there’s a rematch it would be in the state final.
“The girls have done a great job of taking it one game at a time, but they were excited to play Greely,” Scarborough Coach Caitlin Cashman said. “We have a couple of really hard games coming up, and this is a very good example of what those games will be like.”
Greely (6-2-1), ranked No. 3 in the East, was averaging eight goals per game but had lost close games to No. 1 Leavitt/Edward Little (2-1) and No. 2 Lewiston (4-2). The Red Storm (7-0-1), No. 1 in the West, were averaging five goals per game. Kane (38 saves) had not allowed a goal all season.
“This was a huge test for us,” Greely Coach Nate Guerin said. “It was a good challenge, and the girls responded well.”
Well enough to win?
“Yeah, probably,” he said. “We had a lot of close chances against a quality goaltender, probably the best in the state.”
Greely outshot Scarborough 9-4 in a scoreless first period. The pattern continued throughout the contest but Kane was spectacular, including a save on Danita Storey’s breakaway in the second period.
Alyssa Hulst broke through for the Red Storm in the second period, knocking Brenna Kent’s shot from the point past Greely goalie Meg Perry (12 saves) at 6:43.
Paige Tuller tied it early in the third on a power play when she skated past a defender and beat Kane between the pads.
“We had a lot of opportunities and we definitely should have capitalized on that,” Tuller said. “(Kane) does such a great job in net. You can’t just step over the blue line and shoot.”
Kristen Murray put Scarborough up 2-1 about two minutes after Tuller’s goal. She stripped a defender of the puck at center ice, broke in and beat Perry between the pads. Murray and the defender fell into the post, and Murray left the game with a shoulder injury.
Sarah Kurland tied it while the Rangers were killing a penalty. Her shot from the right circle glanced off Kane’s left shoulder and into the net.
“You can’t shoot high or straight at (Kane),” Kurland said. “You have to get a dirty goal, one that goes off a pad or off a scrum in front.”
Kane was happy to take the lesson from a close game, and she was intrigued by the thought of a rematch.
“We’ve never had the drive we have right now,” she said. “If we keep up the drive, I think we can go far.”