Saturday, December 7, 2013
By GREG REID Special to the Telegram
LEWISTON -- After a few lucky bounces, Etta Copenhagen found the top shelf twice Saturday night.
Goalie Emma Seymour holds the state championship trophy aloft Saturday after Greely played its best at the most important time, opening a 6-1 lead in the second period and racing past Falmouth 7-1 in the final at Lewiston.
Photos by Gregory Rec/Staff Photographer
The Greely girls’ hockey team played its best at the most important time, jumping out to a 6-1 lead after two periods and racing past Falmouth 7-1 to capture the state championship Saturday in Lewiston.
Now Greely has to clear space on the top shelf of the trophy case.
Copenhagen had two goals -- one on the power play and one short-handed -- and added an assist on the winning goal as the Rangers rolled to a 7-1 victory over Falmouth in the girls' hockey state championship game at the Colisee.
"Our girls just played incredibly hard," said Greely Coach Nate Guerin. "They were trying to work hard all over the ice and they showed it."
Did they ever. Sarah Kurland and Monica Howland added two goals each as East champion Greely built a 6-1 lead over West champion Falmouth (19-2) after two periods. Copenhagen's unassisted goal while killing a penalty at 2:21 of the third rounded out the scoring.
"This is the best feeling in the world," Copenhagen said. "We came in saying, 'No excuses, no regrets.' We wanted to make history with our first championship."
Greely got a boost from the return of top-scoring forwards Paige Tuller and Meg Finlay. Tuller (two assists) was cleared Friday to return from mononucleosis. Finlay came back from a knee injury.
"Greely got a boost of confidence knowing they have two of their top players back," said Falmouth Coach Rob Carrier. "I told the girls the result wasn't what we wanted but this season was quite an accomplishment. Not many teams win 19 games.
"I also apologized for not getting them mentally prepared for this game. They ran the systems, but they weren't prepared mentally and that's solely on me."
Running into a hot goalie didn't help. Emma Seymour of Greely made 28 saves, including several big ones early. Kirsten Mazur of Falmouth had 19 saves.
"You need a really good chance to beat (Seymour)," Guerin said. "She stopped all the shots she should have and probably a few that should have gone in."
True enough. Megan Fortier, Falmouth's high-scoring defenseman, was the only one to beat Seymour, firing inside the far post after an end-to-end rush at 12:20 of the second, making it 5-1.
"Falmouth is a great team. We have good mutual respect for each other," Copenhagen said. "To beat a team that we knew we could beat but hadn't in the season by 7-1 is incredible."
The Rangers got going early and just kept rolling, going 7 of 7 on the penalty kill and 1 of 3 on power play.
Greely took a 3-0 lead in the first period, as Kurland scored twice around a goal by CeCi Hodgkins. Kurland got the Rangers on the board at 6:19 with a tough-angle shot from along the goal line.
Hodgkins made it 2-0 with a wrist shot from the high slot at 11:32. Kurland added her second 21 seconds later to make it 3-0,
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Alyse Bazinet, left, and Gabriella St. Angelo of Falmouth try to squeeze out Monica Howland of Greely during the girls’ hockey state final at the Colisee in Lewiston on Saturday.
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Meg Pierce, right, of Falmouth tries to clear the puck in front of goalie Kirsten Mazur as Greely’s Monica Howland battles for control.