Over 15 years ago Rich Hopkins had a vision he shared with Williamsville Schools Superintendent Dr. James Rusin. He brought together a group of parents of daughters who played ice hockey in the area and the vision was put into motion.
Hopkins put together a team from all the Williamsville schools and on Wednesday night in their home rink they took the Western New York Girls Varsity Ice Hockey Section VI Championship!
Anyone following this amazing League knows that the Championship usually comes down to the final games of the season and then the final minutes of the game. In this case Frontier/LakeShore/Orchard Park (lovingly known as FLOP) and Williamsville tied taking the game into overtime and keeping all of us on the edge of our seats.
The whole evening began in the first period when FLOP’s Keegan Shanahan scored with just 4 minutes left in the first. Bear in mind that FLOP was going for a repeat championship and then a chance to repeat their NYS 2018 Championship. FLOP scored again with 3.4 seconds left and the first period ended 2-0.
For some we wondered was this the final. Well Williamsville jumped off the bench and Emma Roland scored a powerplay goal and then she put in another before the end of the second period and we have a 2-2 tie.
No the nerves. 41 seconds into the third and FLOP’s Shanahan dumps in another. At 6:42 Williamsville’s Elizabeth Jackson scores and the third ends 3-3 and we are into overtime.
The league calls for a 7.5 minute overtime and 1:40 into it Erin Roland scores and the Williamsville team claims victory.
Stats: Williamsville: Goals from Emma Roland (2 including 1 powerplay); Elizabeth Jackson, Erin Roland (game winner). Assists from Vanessa Willick, Jenna Cavalieri, Elisabeth Sidorski, Samantha Ingham. In goal Sydney Olschewski made 28 of 31 SOG.
FLOP: Keegan Shanahan scored two goal and Brooke Becker had a goal (powerplay)and an assist. Assists came from Gabby Messing, Mary Kromer, Jessica Peters, Jessica Carey and in the nets Tori Cottrell stopped 34 of 38 SOG.
All photos by Janet Schultz, NYHOL.